A South Pasadena July 4th


How did y’all celebrate your vanishing freedoms & liberties in the US of Authorities this past 4th of July?

Like some cities, especially small towns like our neighbor just over our southern border, South Pasadena (So Pasa), they entertain & celebrate Independence Day with an annual parade.   So Pasa calls theirs the Festival of Balloons. Unlike (last I ck’d) our city of Pasadena – the city of parades!  We have plenty parades for the Latin Americans, the African Americans, the DooDah’s, to name a few. Heck, we even have a parade on New Years for Roses of all things!!

But to celebrate the birth of our nation, our independence & freedoms with a July 4th parade we gotta visit our little sister down in the south.  Maybe it’s cuz we Pasadenan’s know better, that there really is becoming less independence & liberty to celebrate.  But, enuf of Mr. Scrooge…


Our group, as in prior years, was invited to participate. However, it was July 4th so I wasn’t gonna have time to participate.  Especially with the humidity & heat. However, the night before things cleared up to allow my patriotic act of participation.

I would join & support my paraders of NO 710ers, IF, I could get up early on a holiday, and then get out of So Pasa early.  Well, I did. So, here’s some shots of the PRE-parade for those of you who live nearby or never attended. I recommend you do one 4th.



Arriving distressingly late, as usual, but our group were basically all there and in parade character. The Spirit of  NO 710! has been at the heart of the South Pasadena community for as long as I can remember or not.  Basically, it means…


IMG_3534(Or, tunnel under us!) The basic philosophy of We The NO 710 People!  I heard the Herb Barnes design studio of Pasadena should take credit for this work of art. A rare, great masterpiece of art in this “modern” age!  Warhol would’ve been envious.




Pre-parade prep included checking headgear and recalling proper banner carrying procedures from Rose Parade days of old.



SoPasa July4th Parade 2013

It turned out the parade started an hour later than I thought. To bide time a couple of us headed over to Buster’s on Mission street: the view from upstairs & street level with Al Fresco. 




I headed back to our NO 710 headquarters, a vintage old bungalow, and took advantage of its porch to grab a few shades & get off my feet as my parade prep for walking in warm & humid weather!  A couple of rabbits had the same idea as this old dog.



It was time to head over to the parade staging area.  Floats (old jalopies) were the highlight to check out…







IMG_3559 I seem to recall this vintage Triumph was the official pace car.


Among the Old cars were parked a couple of modern vehicles, such as the new trash hauler truck (below) which clearly demonstrated the great advances made in modern vehicle technology. And a modern Ferrari red Ford Mustang.

SoPasa July4th Parade 2013-001



As you can see there was plenty of horsepower in this parade. In this case, from Arroyo Stables. 





Pasadena’s Scottish Pipes & Drums – tuning up. Afterwards, they would play at a 2nd July 4th event in Pacific Palisades.



IMG_3556Our group, the largest entry, trying to look organized.



IMG_3569This  KPCC radio reporter asked me where one of our organizers was. The name didn’t ring a bell so I suggested another name. Anyhows, I hope she got our story straight. Then, a bit later one of our group members asked me if I had “seen Claire Bogaard”, the Pasadena Mayor’s wife.  “I hadn’t heard she was gonna be marching with us.”




The Pasadena Scots started playing & marching toward the Community Room of the old So Pasa Library which was the signal the official parade festivities were about to begin.



IMG_3571The So Pasadena politicians/leaders began their patriotic speeches. And We The People took a listen.




IMG_3574From council members to their beloved police chief, each South Pasadena political leader took their opportunity to soak in the benefits of talking in red, white & blue. At the podium above is City Manager Sergio Gonzalez.



Enuf with the talk, it was time for final prep to walk the parade route from the old library, turn onto Mission street, and then finish at Garfield Park on the east side of Fair Oaks.  We were young & old, although some of us could use the exercise more than others, even in the morning heat.





IMG_3593a Representing against the 710 extension scheme




Now just waiting our turn to enter the parade field.


And that’s the pre-parade. Next, the real thing!  What patriot act did you do to celebrate your 4th of July & shrinking 4th amendment liberties under Obama’s hi-tech watch?


Gotta Cool Off! Stay Thirsty My Friends



13 responses to “A South Pasadena July 4th

  1. What a great day; all the opposing cities coming together, not just Pasadena and South Pasadena. There were also representatives from Sierra Madre, Eagle Rock, Highland Park, Mt Washington, Alhambra, El Sereno, Glendale, La Canada, La Crescenta and more!

  2. If the 710 FWY goes through, SOUTH PASADENA will be RUINED. There will be no going back, there will be no rebuilding trees, the old buildings and homes, there will be no way to bring it back except in our fuzzy memories and old pictures.

    I grew up in S.P. and felt lucky to have done so. I’ve since lived in many other places, but have come back to live and write in Pasadena by choice. It is a gorgeous place to live.

    These are two architecturally important cities, which must be preserved and improved- rather than slowly destroyed. We must fight this freeway at all costs, we have this one chance.

    Great site…..I’ll be coming back!


    • You’re speaking to the choir here. This will just mean a freeway or tunnel of psychological horror if this is allowed to go through these historical & unique communities! The ultimate decision of something this significant should be made by we the people who live here & will be affected by this mass of horror, fumes, noise, pollution, destruction, etc. – NOT by outsiders.

      Thanks for your generous praise. I hope u feel the same way about my other articles, haha!

  3. Fun! We have kind of a long tradition of not doing much at all for the 4th (in the Bay area, you can’t see the fireworks through the fog anyway!), and this year Eric was on his way back from Palomar. We grilled sausages and went to bed early, like an old married couple:)

  4. Bravo! It’s super cool that Pasadena came down to join South Pasadenans against the 710 for the 4th. I arrived at the parade late, and crossed Mission right behind your group. One of my sons went with the No 710 group for a year or two of parades before he joined the band. He had very strong opinions about the freeway at a very early age. His picture is in the Arcadia Publishing South Pasadena history illustrating the freeway fight. Little known fact.

    • I most miss coming late for the Pancake breakfast! But I’m glad I found time to make the parade. Where on Mission did you cross?
      And I’m gonna look out for that Arcadia book!

      • I sell the Arcadia Publishing books at the Pasadena Antique Center Annex on Fair Oaks between Del Mar and California. This is ground zero for the 710 tunnel and that’s why I am a Freeway Fighter!

          • Both stores are on the east side of the street, the Annex being just north of the 2 story building and Gales restaurant. I am in space #0734. We are having a 710 Rally tomorrow morning (7/20) at Blair High School at 8:45 before the Metro meeting. Look for us on the news or better yet, join us!