Equipment checks, miles-long marches, 5 a.m. roll calls — training has begun for New Year's Day activities in Pasadena, and it's not just the football teams that are being put through the paces.
Five Glendale Unified student musicians this year earned coveted spots in the 82nd Tournament of Roses Honor Band, including Glendale High School junior Trevor Fritz, Hoover High School seniors Gregory Kalfayan and Allen Au and Crescenta Valley High School senior Kevin Velarde and sophomore Madison Artis.
Practices, some in water-filled shoes, are preparing them to weather the unexpected when they hit Colorado Boulevard on Jan. 1.
"We went to the Santa Anita Race Track parking lot and marched continuously in the rain," Trevor said of his first day with the band.
The 240-member group, composed of student musicians from Pasadena City College and southern California high schools, is a mainstay of the New Year's Day celebration. Nearly 500 musicians competed for the 140 spots allotted to high school students, said band director Kyle Luck. Some travel from as far as Riverside and Orange counties to participate.