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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 31, 2013 | By James Barragan
Every year, 14-year-old Victor Rios would watch the Rose Parade on a television set in his home in the city of Chitre, Panama, marveling at the floats and bands. He never imagined he would attend the parade in person. Then one day in October 2012, Irving Rodriguez Bernal, the band director at Rios' school, called his students in for a meeting. PHOTOS: 125th Tournament of Roses Parade He had a defeated look on his face and the students grew nervous. They had been waiting for months to hear whether they'd been accepted as participants in the parade.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 30, 2013 | By Soumya Karlamangla
Organizers of the Rose Parade are defending the AIDS Healthcare Foundation's plans to hold a same-sex wedding on its float amid criticism and complaints posted online. The float, titled “Living the Dream: Love Is the Best Protection,” was created to celebrate victories in 2013 for gay-marriage advocates, including Supreme Court decisions upholding the repeal of California's Proposition 8 and striking down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act. Foundation spokesman Ged Kenslea said the organization supports legally sanctioning same-sex marriage because it encourages more stable relationships as well as behavior that will prevent the spread of HIV.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 29, 2013 | By Soumya Karlamangla
Danny Leclair snapped a photo of two toy grooms holding hands. He then sent the photo via email to his longtime partner, Aubrey Loots, with a question: "Do you want to get married on a Rose Parade float?" Loots agreed, and on New Year's Day the Los Angeles couple will become real-life wedding cake toppers when they say “I do” on a cake-shaped float in the 125th Tournament of Roses Parade. The AIDS Healthcare Foundation's float, “Living the Dream: Love Is the Best Protection,” was created to celebrate victories in 2013 for gay marriage advocates, including Supreme Court decisions upholding the repeal of California's Proposition 8 and striking down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act. Foundation spokesman Ged Kenslea said the organization supports legally sanctioning same-sex marriage because it encourages more stable relationships among gay men as well as behavior that will prevent the spread of HIV. “We believe that marriage saves lives,” he said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 24, 2013 | By Ari Bloomekatz
There's a war of the roses brewing ahead of the annual Rose Parade in Pasadena as some Southern California farmers make a push for floats to sport flowers grown in the Golden State, not abroad. Four out of every five flowers used to decorate the floats arrive from South America, according to CBS-TV Channel 2 , and at least one bouquet manager aims to change that. "It just strikes me as odd that the flowers aren't necessarily predominantly coming from California flower farmers on the floats," said Rodi Groot, product coordinator at the Sun Valley Group in Oxnard.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 22, 2013 | Hailey Branson-Potts
For so many years, their service was largely forgotten. In the midst of World War II, with legions of male pilots overseas, the 1,102 young women comprising the Women Airforce Service Pilots flew more than 60 million miles domestically, test-flew repaired military aircraft and ferried non-flying male military officers around the country. But as the war neared its end and the men returned, their program was disbanded. Nearly 70 years later, with millions of people watching, their service will be celebrated in grand style with a float in the 125 t h Rose Parade on Jan. 1. WASPs from across the country have been raising money for the float and the trip to Pasadena for the reunion of a lifetime.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 12, 2013 | By Anh Do
At a meeting swirling with emotion, the Westminster City Council voted 5-0 to issue a permit to organizers of the 2014 Tet parade -- even if they refuse to allow LGBT people to march in the event. The entire council voiced sympathy with those who might be barred from the celebration. But Mayor Tri Ta said that as elected officials, the council members were required to uphold 1st Amendment rights, allowing a gathering that's considered free speech. However, he added, "we want to see the unity.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 12, 2013 | By Anh Do
Despite the unrelenting objections of gay rights activists, city leaders in the heart of America's largest Vietnamese-American community voted unanimously to give a permit to organizers of a Lunar New Year parade who vowed to block gays from participating. Members of the Westminster City Council voiced sympathy to those barred from the colorful Tet parade, but said they had no choice but to grant the permit, since they had been advised by the city attorney that organizers of a private event have a free-speech right to determine its content.
NEWS
December 10, 2013 | By Jay Jones
How do Hawaiians get in the Christmas spirit? With a festive parade, a gift fair, a gingerbread creation and a colorful tree. In December, at least 17 Oahu communities will celebrate with parades, and visitors are welcome to join in. Saturday will mark the return of the West Oahu Holiday Electric Light Parade to Kapolei, about 25 miles northwest of Waikiki. The procession, which will include 40 units -- two marching bands will take part too -- begins at 6 p.m. at the Kapolei Fairgrounds and travels to the Kapolei Hale (city hall)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 10, 2013 | By Anh Do
Vietnamese American activists say they will ask Westminster officials to block organizers from staging the colorful Tet parade because they refuse to allow gays to participate in the Lunar New Year event. Parade organizers barred LGBT individuals from marching in the 2013 event and last month voted to ban them again from the upcoming parade. Shunned by one of the community's signature events, many of the gay rights activists stood along the parade route to protest their ouster. Inspired by the activism, they formed Viet Rainbow of Orange County and plan to lobby Westminster council members Wednesday to intervene in what they say is outright discrimination.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 7, 2013 | By Hailey Branson-Potts
Sarah Soriano started yelling just after the parade float rounded the corner. "Fire! Fire! Fire!" The AIDS Healthcare Foundation's Rose Parade float stopped suddenly in the middle of Adelante Street in Irwindale early Saturday morning, its riders hustling down through a massive white cake and to the ground below. "OK, 22 seconds!" Soriano, a Tournament of Roses volunteer, hollered before the riders climbed back onto the float and rolled away. They did well, she said. In a fire drill like this one, the float must be stopped and all riders evacuated within 45 seconds, the Tournament of Roses stipulates - one of hundreds of rules each float must abide by. Saturday was the final day of road and safety tests for numerous entries built by Fiesta Parade Floats and Paradiso Parade Floats in Irwindale.
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