LOS ANGELES – The American Armenian Rose Float Association (AARFA) has released the design for the next Armenian rose float, which will take part in the 129th Pasadena Tournament of Roses, on January 1, 2018. This will be the Armenian rose float’s fourth consecutive participation in the world-renowned tournament.
Carrying the theme “Armenian Roots,” the new Armenian rose float will be dedicated to Armenian mothers, daughters, sisters, and grandmothers, as individuals who are the foundation of acts of kindness that enrich the lives of others; who are a source of inspiration, hope, joy, and optimism; and whose unconditional love contributes to the greatness of their communities and nation.
The theme of the Armenian rose float echoes the general theme of the 129th Pasadena Tournament of Roses, which “Making a Difference.” As described by Lance Tibbet, president of the 2017-2018 Tournament of Roses, “ The ‘Making a Difference’ theme is a way to honor and celebrate all of the people in our communities who, quietly and without desire for reward or recognition, act in selfless, generous, and kind ways to aid or benefit others.”
The design of the new Armenian rose float was conceived by AARFA Board member Johnny Kanounji. The centerpiece consists of the bust of a young woman dressed in traditional Armenian garments and headgear and tending a young pomegranate tree. The elements in the back and front of the imposing centerpiece comprise a colorful pastiche of Armenian motifs, including Armenian carpets and pomegranates. While some of the patterns of the carpets are nods to ancient Armenian architecture and heraldry, their background colors are also rich in symbology. The green, for instance, symbolizes hope, renewal, life, and spring; and red symbolizes beauty, wealth, courage, joy, and faith.
On New Year’s Day, 2018, the Pasadena Tournament of Roses will be seen by about 700,000 spectators in Pasadena and a global audience in 245 countries and territories.
As in previous years, some 600 community volunteers will work on the floral assembly of the 2018 Armenian rose float. Given the considerable cost of materials and construction of the float, the AARFA is appealing for generous grassroots community support. Tax-deductible donations can be made online at www.aarfa.org or sent to the following address: American Armenian Rose Float Association, P.O. Box 60005, Pasadena, CA 91116.