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No Rose Parade: Southern California laments the loss of a tradition.

By Tim Arango

The Pasadena City College marching band performed during the 2020 Rose Parade.
Credit…Michael Owen Baker/Associated Press

For just about every New Year’s Day since 1958, Carla Hall has situated herself on a patch of asphalt in front of a car dealership in downtown Pasadena, Calif. To a 10-year-old girl, it was the perfect spot to watch the majesty unfold — the “artistry” she calls it, of the floats and the marching bands, the beauty queens and horses.

“All that love that goes into it,” Ms. Hall, 72, said this week, tearing up at the memories. “I’m going to start crying, sorry.”

In a small gesture of defiance in the face of trying times, she will be there this year, too, wearing her mask, and marking her spot, as usual, with chalk and tape.

Of course, there will be no Rose Parade, a Southern California institution that began in 1890. It was canceled months ago, just like everything else. But now its absence is finally here, to officially enter the ledger of things lost to the coronavirus pandemic.


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