Parade grand marshal Vin Scully was introduced as the event began at Colorado and Orange Grove boulevards, and kicked off the festivities with a trademark “hi everybody, and a very pleasant good day to you...”
“And for now, instead of me throwing out the first pitch, let's start the parade,” said Scully, moments before switching to sunglasses for the ride east in the brilliant
The grandstands crowd went wild for the Cal Poly Universities float, “Bedtime Buccaneers,” which stopped to disgorge three motorized space aliens in their own car-sized mini-floats. The aliens then drove back onto the mother transport ship, a ploy that won the students this year's Crown City Innovation Award for best use of imagination and innovation to advance float design.
The Governor's Award for best depiction of life in
The City of
For the first time, two men were to be married on a parade float, watched by many of the 700,000 people in attendance and a
Scully, the voice of the
Other parade trophy winners included the Craftsman Award, for exceptional showmanship in floats longer than 55 feet, to “Lucy's Performing Rescue Dogs” from the Lucy Pet Foundation, Inc.
And activists from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals planned to demonstrate against SeaWorld and its float entry, “The Sea of Surprise,” which includes killer whales -- mammals PETA says should be set free.
The Sea World float had a large number of uniformed police and sheriff's deputies walking next to it. No protestors were visible on the televised coverage of the event, but 16 PETA protesters blocked the float as it rolled towards the parade start,