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Elephants out on show for Rose Parade

April 09, 2005

Mark R. Madler

As a long-time participant in the annual Tournament of Roses Parade,

John Cappi knows what people like in a float.

So when the Burbank Tournament of Roses Assn. held a contest to

choose the 2006 float design, he submitted two entries -- one of

which was chosen as the winning design.

"I've submitted designs in the past, but didn't do too well


because I drew them myself," said Cappi, who has helped build

Burbank's float for years. "When you do stick figures, it doesn't do

well in the contest."

The winning design, "Pachyderm Parade," depicts a family of

elephants, with the father elephant running after a spilled peanut

cart, with mother elephant behind him and a baby elephant suspended

in mid-air hanging onto her tail.

"It's Magic" is the theme of the 117th-annual parade scheduled for

Jan. 2, 2006, along Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena.

Cappi worked on the design with professional artist Ric Scoczari

of Burbank. It was chosen from 75 entries, Burbank Tournament of

Roses Assn. President Teri Bastian said.

"I think they were going for the cuteness factor," Bastian said,

as to why the association members settled on the design. "That, and

the challenge of having the [baby] elephant 15-feet in the air all by


Cappi's expertise in welding and engineering, from a career of

building race cars, was the motivating factor for getting involved

with the association, he said.

"John has been involved for many years with the float and the

construction crew," association member Steven Edward said. "He's done

a lot of the welding and shaping of the float. He almost

single-handedly built our tree this year."

The 2005 float, "Dinner's on ... Fire!" depicted a family of bears

at a barbecue gone awry and included a large tree with a beehive.

The bear float was the 2005 winner of the Founder's Trophy, the

award given to the best float made entirely by volunteers. It was the

third year in a row a Burbank float has won an award.

Volunteers will begin work on the float at the Burbank Water &

Power facility on Lake Street in May and will likely continue working

on it through December. The flowers used on the float are ordered in

the spring and will be available in December.

The City Council still needs to give its approval for the float at

an upcoming meeting.

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