Sunday, November 25, 2007

hollywood christmas parade

HOLLYWOOD -- The cast of Disney's "High School Musical" and former "The Price is Right" host Bob Barker will highlight Sunday's Hollywood Santa Parade, which was saved from extinction by the Los Angeles City Council.

The procession will begin about 5 p.m. Sunday at Hollywood Boulevard and Orange Drive.

Barker will lead the parade as the grand marshal.

"I think this parade has become a great tradition. It gives people in Hollywood and in Los Angeles and all the surrounding communities an opportunity -- black, white, brown -- to join together, have fun, and join as one voice to acknowledge that come what may, Hollywood is indeed still the entertainment capital of the world," Barker said.

"Over the years, the grand marshal rides along and he says, `Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.' Well, I'm going to say, `Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and have your pets spayed or neutered,"' he added.

In addition to Barker and the cast of "High School Musical," the parade will feature Shawn and Marlon Wayans, Dick Van Patten, Casey Kasem, Mickey Rooney, Rip Taylor, the "Dog Whisperer" Cesar Millan, and crooner Jack Jones. High school bands, equestrian groups, and of course Santa Claus are also scheduled to take part in the parade.

"Around the world, Hollywood is synonymous with celebrity and we're honored to have so many celebrities as part of Hollywood's Santa Parade. I'm looking forward to the parade and hope to see everyone there," said City Council President Eric Garcetti, who represents the area.

Because of flagging attendance and rising costs, the parade was nearly canceled this year when in March the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce decided not to fund it after 75 years.

But the Los Angeles City Council decided last month to throw its financial weight behind the effort and ensure that a procession will indeed be held in Hollywood after all.

It will cost $260,000 to put on this year's parade. The city of Los Angeles is putting in $60,000, according to Garcetti's office. The rest of the funds will come from sponsors, including the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel, Channel 35, the Los Angeles Port Authority, Metropolitan Transportation Authority, San Antonio Winery and Dunes Inn Sunset.

"Hollywood's annual holiday parade down Hollywood Boulevard is back -- as Hollywood's Santa Parade," said Councilman Tom LaBonge, who also represents the area. "We're excited with the line-up of talent, bands and the salute to firefighters and look forward to seeing one and all."

To prepare for the parade, on Saturday, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation will close Hollywood Boulevard between Orange Drive and Vine Street, Vine Street between Hollywood and Sunset boulevards, and Sunset between Vine and La Brea Avenue.

The event started in 1928 and was known as the "Santa Claus Lane Parade" until 1978. It was held annually except during the Great Depression in 1930 and World War II, from 1942 to 1944.

Comedian Joe E. Brown was the first grand marshal in 1932, a role later filled by such entertainment legends as Bob Hope, Gene Autry and James Stewart.

Recent grand marshals have included Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, basketball legend Magic Johnson and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

George Lopez was the grand marshal of the most recent parade, with Regis Philbin as the honorary grand marshal.

Sunday Parking:

Lots of streets will be closed for today's Hollywood Santa Parade, and officials say vehicles will be towed if they're parked illegally on the affected streets.

As many as 250,000 people are expected to attend the parade, which replaces the 79-year-old Hollywood Christmas Parade and will follow the same route.

The earlier parade lost its sponsorship by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce this year, because of rising costs. So Los Angeles officials decided to put up $60,000 of city money, and found other backers to meet the total $260,000 cost of this weekend's slightly down-scaled event.

It'll feature game show icon Bob Barker as grand marshal, and the cast of ``High School Musical," along with celebrities, bands, floats and equestrian units.

Barker is very glad the event was saved this year. He said "I think this parade has become a great tradition. It gives people in Hollywood and in Los Angeles and all the surrounding communities an opportunity -- black, white, brown -- to join together, have fun, and join as one voice to acknowledge that come what may, Hollywood is indeed still the entertainment capital of the world."

The procession will begin about 5 p.m. at Hollywood Boulevard and Orange Drive
Hollywood Christmas Parade
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Hollywood Christmas Parade took place every year for 75 years on the weekend after Thanksgiving in the Hollywood community in Los Angeles, California, United States. The parade's 3.5-mile route followed Hollywood Boulevard and Sunset Boulevard and had many celebrities among its participants. In 2007, the parade was in jeopardy of being cancelled, but the City of Los Angeles has sponsored the parade and renamed it Hollywood's Santa Parade.

1 History
2 Grand Marshals
3 Marching Bands 2007
4 Resources

[edit] History
The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce created the Hollywood Christmas Parade in 1928 to boost shopping. Originally called the Santa Claus Lane Parade, the inaugural event featured only Santa Claus and the actress Jeanette Loff.

The parade continued to grow in scale with the help of local businesses and the community. In 1931 Santa Claus rode a truck-pulled float instead of the reindeer-pulled carriage of previous years. American Legion Post 43 marched with a color guard, drum line and bugle corps.

The Parade was suspended from 1942 to 1944 due to World War II, but the parade reopened in 1945 with record attendance.

In 1946 Gene Autry rode his horse in the parade and was inspired by the children yelling "Here comes Santa Claus, Here comes Santa Claus," to write the song "Here Comes Santa Claus" along with Oaklely Haldeman.

The parade continued to grow through 1950s, '60s, and '70s, adding floats, animals, bands, and celebrities.

In 1978 the parade was renamed to the Hollywood Christmas Parade to attract more celebrities and the parade was broadcast locally on KTLA-TV with the help of Johnny Grant. The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, who produces the parade, announced they will discontinue airing the parade on KTLA and other Tribune-owned stations due to rising production costs.

In March 2007, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce decided to end the parade's run due to lack of celebrities and a loss of $100,000 for the 2006 production, which The Associated Press said cost about $1 million to mount. There is a Save The Hollywood Christmas Parade campaign underway and details can be found here.

The 2007 parade IS HAPPENING. It is being run by Pageantry Productions based out of Redondo Beach and is being retitled "Hollywood's Santa Parade." The parade is an invitation only parade which only the best horse units and marching bands are being invited. Bob Barker has been named Grand Marshall for this year's parade. KTLA will once again resume their annual broadcast of the parade, airing on a tape-delayed basis on December 16, 2007 due to the station airing a weekend-long 60th anniversity marathon on the same weekend as the parade. 2007 Parade website.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home