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February 2021 Newsletter

Ernest Koeppen and Team  | Published on 2/17/2021



Over the past months, as I have shared, LCFTRA is making great strides improving our organization.Since this past year was an “off” year, it has given us some additional time to make long-term goals a priority for the organization.We are developing a new strategic plan.We are working with a new technology platform, which allows us to consolidate efforts and help the organization meet the challenges of the years to come.We have also been able to make needed improvements to the float itself.This will help ensure a long life for many parades to come for LCFTRA.

Another of our efforts is safety at the site.Entering the “new normal” we want to make the site a safe place to come and work.As the pandemic started, it was “safer at home”.Now that things are starting to open again, we are hopeful to have “safer at the site”.Board Members have purchased and stockpiled safety supplies.These include gloves, face shields, masks, hand sanitizers and dispensers.We have created new policies and practices which will improve safety measures and create a comfortable environment for all our volunteers.

As we continue to use best practices to ensure our safety, and as the vaccine is becoming more available, LCFTRA is preparing to return to site, in a safe way.Building our float is truly a team effort.Everyone’s hard work will pay off and our float for the 2022 Parade will be a great tribute to the efforts and sacrifices which everyone has made.

I encourage everyone to stay involved and remain excited as we enter the following months.More great things to come.Thanks for everyone’s efforts and look forward to a better 2021.

Michael Davitt,’



We build floats. We build community. We build friendships.

The La Cañada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Association (LCFTRA) holds a very unique place in the foothills community.What other organization or activity can claim all of the following:
  • Tells 70 million people around the world about our great community?
  • Brings a new year’s smile and celebration to those same 70 million people?
  • Teaches hands-on skills to our youth and families?
  • Brings together more than 1,000 volunteers over a ten day period to work side-by-side on a fun project?
  • Teaches amateurs of all experience levels to learn new building skills?
  • Surrounds community members with tens of thousands of roses, carnations and other beautiful flowers?
  • Allows our families and kids to work on a project and then see it on national TV within a few days and be able to say:“See those flowers on the front – I put those there”?
  • Attracts visitors from across the country to come help or watch the process unfold?
  • Combines creativity, design, woodwork, metal work, welding, sculpture, painting, flower preparation, computer programming, horticulture, engine repair and maintenance, food preparation and service, fundraising, team work, other skills, laughter and fun?
  • Results in volunteers meeting and marrying?
  • Boasts of volunteers who have continued to give their time and talents over the entire 40+ year history (or most of it) of LCFTRA?

Join in the fun.Become a member. If you are a member, raise your donation level.Make an additional donation.Volunteer your time.Visitwww.LCFTRA.orgfor more details.


Greg Brown

VP - Administration



*** JANUARY 2021 ***


Rose Circle

Chuck and Becky Gelhaar

Duane and Janice Paul

Eremita Miranda and Larry Andreason


Victor and Alexandra Levine

Marv and Mary Nelson

Glen and Nancy Pittson

Ann Stewart


Dr. and Mrs. John Coleman

Mary Gant

Charlotte Layland

KC Maloney

Dave Mihal

Farhad Motia

Ann Neilson

Bill and Brett Pounders

Stu and Diane Williams


Bart and Susette Campbell

Cassandra Coleman

Alan and Rose Harris

Stuart and Katy Kamille

Jeb Long and Marilyn Pieroni

Carolyn Northern


Pat Anderson

Joyce Ruygrok

Joan Scott

Carolyn Straddling

Brian and Cindy Wilcox


Eremita Miranda & Larry Andreason



Phase 2 of PasadenaTournament of Roses'required safety changes: rebuilding of the backend continues.


Float:As the result of safety changes required by the Pasadena TofR due to the event in the 2019 parade, we are required to reconstruct the front end and the back end of the float for increased towing capacity (over 30,000 lbs of capacity!!!).

The front end work is complete and work has begun on assembling the three sections of the back end.The portion that will contain the two hydraulic drive motors has been assembled and tack welded.The two mounting plates for the drive motors have been fabricated and have arrived on site waiting for the final assembly and welding.The center section of the rear end has been assembled and Owen Doodie from Loren Brugger Welding has finished the structural welding of the section.All the pieces of the third section that includes the rear hitch assembly have been deburred, beveled, and positioned awaiting the structural welder.

Pam and Dwight have removed the framework behind the radiators in preparation for their complete removal.

The hydraulic hose replacement project is proceeding, Earl at Hoseline has spent time working on the hoses going to the front end.Dwight, Pam, John, and Ernest have removed more of the hydraulic hoses from the animation system.We are making headway on the replacement-hydraulic-hoseproject with a goal of eliminating redundant hoses, redesigning the layout andmanagement of all hoses and manifolds, and replacing most of the older lines.We are also developing a schematic diagram of the hydraulic system to assist in future operations and maintenance.

A meeting was held with Kelly Roberts from the Downey Float.Kelly was a roller coaster technician at Knott’s Berry Farm and is currently an inspector with Cal OSHA for amusement parks.Kelly provided us a wealth of knowledge regarding roller coasters and suggestions for our proposed design.

As a result of Kelly’s comments, we have modified our concept and are getting the parts for a prototype carriage that Grant designed to support the dogs in the skateboard park.

As you can see, the critical pieces are moving forward, and we expect to have the three sections of the back end ready for assembly in March.

Site:Wecontinue to work in smaller shifts, spacing ourselves so we can keepmoving forward.
2021 Float Drawing

The work is invigorating and challenging. If you want to ‘getout’, we are here - safely spaced, and eager to havethe help and camaraderie.During this COVID environmentyou are requested to call or email in advance to confirmactivity prior to visiting the site.


Ernest Koeppen, John Wolhaupter, Dwight Crumb

Construction Co-Chairs


Did you know?
There is an Excel spreadsheet that is the beating heart behind every float that has recently been decorated. It is filled with formulas and definitions that make it possible to determine every material needed on the float. By finishing this spreadsheet, we've officially "called out" the float for the year, although it's never quite finished until final judging is complete.

The first step is to name every single piece of the float. Here's an example of a character's eye. These are all of the parts of one eye of one character: "Bicycle Dog, Left Eye: Main, Highlight, Pupil, Outline". That's four different names for one eye! After we name every single part of the float, we can decide what materials go on each part. What's usually on an eye? Tapioca, Onion Seed, Poppy Seed, and Statice have all featured on recent float eyes.

Once we've typed those materials into the spreadsheet, the magic happens. The spreadsheet automatically determines what paint color will go under the eye, what glue will be used, what material needs to be ordered, and how much of each! This year we're inviting folks to join us in "calling out" the characters on the float. We'll choose a character or two, and you are welcome to join us in suggesting materials to decorate that character. Check in next month for the first set of dates. If you know you are interested in joining us, please send an email, and we'll add you to the list!

Sara Wickersham, Jennifer LazoDeco




During these first two weeks of February, the organization normally would be scrambling to get renderings, at least the black and white versions, ready for the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Theme Draft meeting. Because of the Pandemic, the organization can bypass Theme Draft and go straight to preparing for its second appearance before the Design Variance board to get final approval of the rendering with all the graffiti tags appropriately licensed, or at least displaying phrases that do not require licensing.

With the celebration and exhilaration that occurs after final judging and the parade, it is often easy to forget the starting point for each year.

Like comic strips, I started to compile three panels for some of our past floats: from black & white to color to parade. So please enjoy from concept to performance for our own unique “graphic art strips.”

President Ann Neilson produced three award-winners: 2012:if pigs could fly(Bob Hope Humor), 2013:Dino-Soar(Animation); and 2014:Dog Gone(Bob Hope Humor). Ann was also the first president to actively search for sponsorships to name the characters withDog Gone.

Pam Wiedenbeck,Treasurerand PastPresident(2010 & 2011)’
Float Rendering Strips


As our winter season moves forward, we've had snow on the local mountains and rain in the forecast, which is perfect for our La Cañada Flintridge float to showcase Mother Nature's beautiful flowers!
The Floatique and entire LCFTRA team look forward to seeing you in 2021 and coming together to create another outstanding and beautiful float.
Take care, stay healthy and keep that 2022 Rose Parade spirit and enthusiasm going strong.

Floatique Staff:



Construction Site:
Behind 4524 Hampton Road
La Cañada Flintridge
CA 91011
United States of America

Mailing Address for All Correspondence:
P.O. Box 253
La Cañada Flintridge,
CA 91012
United States of America