Friday, December 29, 2006

DOWNEY ROSE FLOAT 2007 ...update

January 1, 2007. I did not make it back to take more pictures but seeing the float on TV, it was more beautiful than I imagined it would be. AND, it won a trophy, I think Founders. Congratulations Downey Rose Float Association!

Today I went to Downey and worked on their Rose Parade Float for 2007. The theme of their float this year is Springtime Treasures and above is the concept painting.

This is a view of the front of the float (I think it's the front). It is in an old warehouse to protect it from the elements. Some of the birds, flowers and butterflies are off the float to be decorated.

Next to the warehouse in a large tent the flowers are kept. A few people were working on cutting up certain flowers to be used as cover material.

Here are some flowers being kept in water that will be placed on the float tomorrow. That will be the big flower placing day.

Still more flowers. The colors were so vibrant.

The roses were still wrapped up. There were a couple of hundred bouquets in many colors in one section of the tent.

Outside were some large pretend flowers that had been covered with rice, cut up yellow straw flowers and some seed that was orange. They were outside to dry and to be out of the way. It can be very crowded in the warehouse.

These girls were from a Girl Scout Troop from Whittier/La Habra. I was helping them for awhile placing the black seed on the wings of the butterfly.

This butterfly had the black seed on. I later helped with white ground up rice for the white part, yellow cut up straw flower for the yellow part and some orange seeds for the orange part. I left before the blue cut up flower was applied so I am not sure what kind of flower they were using there.

This bird was being painted so people would know where to place the flowers and seeds later. He was in half so parts of him could be reached better. I am not sure what they use to keep him together.

This was interesting. I had seen people outside cutting up pineapple and letting the outside skin dry in the sun. Later I saw they were using it for the bottom of this flower (I think they are supposed to look like something called Thistle). There will be three of these on one end and two or three on the other. The men putting these on said the spikey part of the pineapple didn't bother them but the glue they were using was very messy and hard to work with. Think of drippy Caro syrup and you would have an idea of what it looked like.

Sometimes parts of the float are hard to reach. These young people had put seeds on the top of this flower and now they have to get underneath and put seed there too.

I will not be able to go back tomorrow but I may go back Sunday afternoon. Most of the work will be done then and I can get pictures of the finished float. It is scheduled to leave the warehouse in Downey and be moved to Pasadena sometime between 5 and 7 PM that day. If it leaves at 7 PM it will be too dark to take pictures, I think.

I do not have photos from Christmas Joy to post yet, but when I get them I will.

Friday, December 01, 2006


My church, Bethany Church, in Long Beach is putting on a big Christmas production called Christmas Joy - The Gift. This is the 32nd year it has been presented. Every year it is called Christmas Joy but the story line is different. Also every year the play takes place in the late 1800' in a village.

Because I play in the hand bell choir there, I am automatically in Christmas Joy. We play for the prelude and also we play one piece for the last scene. We walk in from the back aisle playing and continue up on stage. The number is Ding Dong Merrily on High. Let
me tell you, it has not been easy getting this in my head but I have done it!

I also decided to be an extra. I have no speaking part, nor do I sing. I appear in the general store shopping. I walk across the stage into the dress shop. I stand out front of the dress shop and listen to "carolers", I walk across the stage again, I sit on a bench like I am in church, etc.

The set was begun in November and the two side buildings rotate. It is all very well done.

The drama cast and singers have been practicing since August. Us extra's were brought in to practice the middle of November. Last night was the final, big rehearsal where we all were in full costume, hair and makeup. Paul came to take pictures but the batteries on the camera were low so he didn't get many. I am very made up, makeup wise, in
these pictures because stage lights will wipe you out and the makeup needs to be heavy. So I look somewhat overdone in these pictures with a regular flash on me.

Our first performance is tomorrow and it's free. We have two performances tomorrow and Sunday and then the same the following weekend. Doors open at 3 PM and 6:30 PM for the prelude.

In a couple of weeks I hope to update this blog on how it went.

My cape is reversable. When I am playing hand bells for the prelude and then the final act I will wear the plaid side out as in the above photo. For the play, as an extra, I will wear the solid color out.
I am wearing a hoop skirt under all that fabric. My purse is the plaid fabric. A wonderful woman at the church made my costume and a costume for a new choir member. I made my hat and purchased the curls hanging down.

This is a scene during the "church service" part of the play. We extras are sitting on benches and standing. That's me in the front turning and looking at another extra like we are commenting on what is happening in the play. We are supposed to be animated. This picture was very dark and red in color. I took it into Microsoft Office Picture Manager and was able to lighten it up and also get the colors to come out. I'm very proud of myself :)

Added 12/3: Our first two performances on Saturday the 2nd went very well. A few miscues here and there but nothing the audience would notice. The handbells were a little shaky for the afternoon performance but we were much better in the evening. I think as we continue we will get stronger. I am having loads of fun. I love to play dress up!