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Where Rose Parade floats are born

December 29, 2011

Millions of Americans are familiar with the Rose Parade, the storied Pasadena pageant whose flower-covered floats have dazzled viewers for more than a century.

What's less known is that most of those rolling creations are produced by a trio of local firms that labor in obscurity most of the year to prepare for a single day in January.

Phoenix Decorating Co. in Pasadena, Fiesta Parade Floats in Irwindale and Artistic Entertainment Services in Azusa are the Rose Parade's Big Three.

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With the Jan. 2 showtime fast approaching, the companies are putting the finishing touches on floats that took months to design and build. On average, each craft costs more than a typical U.S. home.

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Volunteers help with the Western Asset float. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times

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