The float, to be called “3D Double Feature,” is one of the most ambitious designs in the city’s roughly 75-year history of participating in the Rose Parade, organizers said.
The set will include a classic convertible facing a drive-in movie theater screen, from which a large Tyrannosaurus Rex will jut out in a nod to the blockbuster movie “Jurassic Park.”
At the same time, a suspended “flying saucer” will be shooting a laser beam at on-screen buildings as part of a scene from the 1996 film “Mars Attacks!”
The T rex’s head will be animatronic, and pyrotechnics will be used for the laser effects, organizers said.
“It’s taken a lot of careful planning,” Burbank Rose Float Assn. President John Hames said. “It’s pretty ambitious.”
And an ambitious project requires plenty of money and volunteer hours.
The association, working under a budget of slightly less than $100,000, has been raising funds all year through corporate sponsorship deals on its website.
City Hall has provided the largest chunk of funding, approving a $67,000 grant earlier this year, Hames said.
On Saturday, members of the Burbank Kiwanis For Fun flipped pancakes and grilled bacon as hungry Rose float supporters trickled in throughout the morning.
The Kiwanis volunteers, who frequently do the cooking for joint fundraisers for many nonprofits throughout the year, were well-prepared.
Their portable kitchen was stocked with 75 pounds of pancake batter and 50 pounds of bacon for the event, said Jan Loporchio, president of the organization.
“Syrup — I have no idea,” she said.
The pancake breakfast was the Burbank Rose Float Assn.’s largest fundraising event planned for the year as attention begins to focus squarely on construction, which is completely volunteer-driven.
Jennifer Edward, who was at the pancake breakfast with her family, has volunteered her welding and design skills for the float for many years, and this year was no different, she said.
“It keeps your interest because each year you get to start on something new,” she said.
To be sure, the annual project starts to wear on volunteers toward the end of the float’s construction timeline, but by January, you’re ready to do it again, Edward said.
Crews have started working almost around the clock, constructing the float’s mechanical underpinnings, she said.
It is now about 30% completed, and soon, between 200 and 300 volunteers will be working to decorate the float at any given time, Hames said.
“Some stay for an hour, some you can’t get rid of,” he said.