It has been seventy five years since it was first thought of. It was a simple parade that was intended to help bring business to Hollywood Boulevard. After three quarters of a century it is now a tradition that has attracted about half a million spectators, creating a bigger crowd than that at the Academy Awards.
This year the Hollywood Christmas Parade there are 16 floats. Michael Bolton, some cast members of High School Musical and various marching bands from different parts of the United States will take part in this event. The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce says that this will be their biggest show ever – as it should be since it is the 75th anniversary of the event.
This year’s Grand Marshal is Comedian George Lopes and Honorary Grand Marshal is Regis Philbin. They have quite a task ahead of them. It is the job of the Grand Marshal to attract big name celebrities to the event. The previous years show that that isn’t an easy task to do these days. You won’t see Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie in the parade though some wish they would.
Back in the 1920’s it was simply called the Santa Claus Lane Parade. Santa rode in a one reindeer sleigh with a Hollywood star waving to the crowd beside him. The first actress to star in the parade was Jeanette Loff. Now there is no more reindeer, just a lot of floats and some stars and hopefully a lot of fun and music.
Among the stars who have taken part in the parade are Bing Crosby, Mary Pickford, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, James Stewart, Danny Thomas, Stevie Wonder and Lawrence Welk. Former Grand Marshals include Sammy Davis Jr., Charlton Heston, Bob and Dolores Hope, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans and even Mickey and Minnie Mouse.
The parade has expanded to accommodate the increased number of spectators. It now travels along Sunset Boulevard as well as Hollywood Boulevard. Don’t worry though if you are too far away to catch the parade. It gets both national and international coverage so you can catch it from the comfort of your home.
[tags] Hollywood,Christmas,parade,floats,commerce [/tags]
Originally posted on November 26, 2006 @ 8:23 pm