Waking up early on New Year’s Day to watch the Rose Parade has been a tradition of mine that dates back to my childhood in El Salvador where it used to be broadcast live, dubbed in Spanish. There was just something magical about watching these enormous, artistic and colorful floats parade down a usually sunny California winter day that has stuck with me always. Never did I think back then that I would one day be thisclose to an actual float and get to witness first hand how these beautiful artworks on wheels are created. But thanks to Disney, my family and I got to go behind the scenes of the making of the Disneyland Resort‘s entry into the 124th Rose Parade: “Destination: Cars Land.”
On Saturday my husband, daughter and I walked into a giant wearhouse in the city of Azusa — just a 20-minute drive from the city of Pasadena, host to the Tournament of Roses — to find the town of Cars Land’s Radiator Springs in the midst of a transformation to become a 125-foot long float. The float has been on the works for months now, with the initial design stages starting during the summer, but when we visited they only had two more days of decorating to go before it had to make its 5 mph drive down the freeway to its spot in the Rose Parade. At this stage the float, which has the shape of the state of California, was divided in two main parts, with several of the characters and pieces being worked on separately.
“Destination: Cars Land” is not the Disneyland Resort’s first entry in a Rose Parade. In fact, they have a relationship that dates back 75 years when in 1938 characters from the newly premiered “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” were prominently featured in the parade.
We certainly can’t wait to see our favorite new attraction in Disney’s California Adventure along with Lightning McQueen, Sally and other “Cars” stars make their grand debut as a Rose Parade Float this New Year’s Day. The parade, with the theme “Oh the Places You’ll Go,” starts at 8am PST and you can catch “Destination: Cars Land” at 9am.
Check out the pictures below from our behind the scenes adventure to get even more excited and find out interesting facts about the float itself.