It’s the Year of the Comeback – of the Clydesdales

The 2014 Rose Queen and Princesses won’t be the only royalty spending hours in hair and makeup before the Rose Parade. The Clydesdales are back and these gentle giants will undergo a five-hour pampering process as they get ready for their 58th Rose Parade appearance.

After being washed and groomed, the horses will have red and white ribbons braided into their manes and matching bows around their tails. Once all eight are ready, each of their harnesses will be polished, then the team will be harnessed to the wagon (an additional 45 minute process!).

Standing about six feet tall and weighing approximately 2,000 pounds, one Clydesdale consumes as much as 20 to 25 quarts of whole grains, minerals and vitamins, 50 to 60 pounds of hay and 30 gallons of water a day!

Standing about six feet tall and weighing approximately 2,000 pounds, one Clydesdale consumes as much as 20 to 25 quarts of whole grains, minerals and vitamins, 50 to 60 pounds of hay and 30 gallons of water a day!

Despite a two-year hiatus, the Budweiser Clydesdales enjoy a rich history in the Rose Parade, having made their debut in 1953. It was Carlota “Lotsie” Busch of Anheuser-Busch who began the tradition of substituting horses for motors to propel the City of St. Louis float.  Regardless of advances in engine technology, Clydesdales remained the power of choice and over time, became almost as associated with St. Louis’s float as the prominent Anheuser-Busch name.

While pulling a float has been a signature of the Clydesdales, this year – for the first time – they will participate as an equestrian unit. Instead of a float in tow, the team of eight will pull a 12-ton red, white and gold Studebaker-built beer wagon!  (Be sure to watch for who is riding on that wagon.)

Prior to the Rose Parade, equestrian units will participate in the annual Equestfest event, presented by Wells Fargo, on Dec. 29 at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center.

Curious about the other 2014 Rose Parade Equestrian Entries? Visit www.tournamentofroses.com to learn more!

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Tournament Hits a Home Run with Vin Scully as 2014 Grand Marshal

Dreams have come true for sports fans everywhere – especially Los Angeles Dodgers fans. Tournament of Roses President Scott Jenkins has selected Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully as the 2014 Grand Marshal. Announced at Tournament House on Thursday, September 5, Scully was made to feel right at home with flourishes from “the national pastime.”

With pennants hung from balconies, Dodger Blue curtains framing the front door, and Cracker Jack being munched by the crowd, anticipation built, along with speculation, as the music of an organ accompanied the murmur of the anxious attendees. Following introductory remarks by President Jenkins and the familiar rally of “Charge!” from the organist, the drapes parted to reveal the beaming 85-year-old broadcast legend.

“Hi, everybody, and a very pleasant Thursday to you!”

“Hi, everybody, and a very pleasant Thursday to you!”

After a standing ovation and cheers from the audience, Scully applauded the Executive Committee for inviting him during one of the Dodgers’ more successful seasons, and predicted that the team will win the Western Division. All jokes and his fun-loving nature aside, Scully expressed his sincere gratitude.

“I am deeply humbled and greatly honored to be the Grand Marshal of the 125th Rose Parade,” he said. “I look forward to sharing this wonderful moment with my wife, Sandi, and the millions who will be watching.”

An icon spanning generations, Scully’s professional baseball broadcasting career began in 1950 and continues today. In fact, Scully will call his 65th season for the Dodgers in 2014. Despite numerous awards and having witnessed some of the greatest moments in baseball history, Scully remains humble and plans on using his time as Grand Marshal to connect with and thank the sports fans who continue to provide the roar of the crowd that he has loved since childhood.

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