tHula Girlsheme | general rule | application fees & datelines | safety rules | special rules | parade route | parade calendar


Saturday, May 19, 2018 Santa Rosa, California
Parade Steps Off at 10:00 AM

Theme will be announced soon. Check back for details.

Welcome to the 123rd Annual Luther Burbank Rose Parade & Festival, one of Sonoma County’s most honored traditions and one of the oldest and largest events of its kind in Northern California.

  • To make sure you thoroughly enjoy the parade experience, read all of these pages carefully.
  • Please review this document and pay close attention to the deadlines and meeting dates.
  • On parade day, it is important to have everything you need.
  • If you are prepared, you will not have to worry about being told at the last minute that what you have arranged does not meet the guidelines.
  • The following guidelines are designed to make the parade safe, enjoyable and entertaining for all.

Theme 2017: Life in Motion

This year’s theme of Life in Motion celebrates a healthy community showcasing good, healthy living, healthy eating, movement and experiences that enrich our lives. The benefits of an active lifestyle are powerful and motivating and it’s easy to see why a LIFE IN MOTION is integral to health and happiness for the year ahead!

General Rules for all Entries

1. All entries should be decorated or costumed and relate to the Parade Theme.

2. ROSES: All entries, except bands, must have at least one rose visible to the judges. Roses may be natural flowers, painted, drawn or sculpted flowers. Entries without roses will be penalized 10 points. Bands wearing roses or otherwise incorporating roses in their entry (e.g. using rose related music) will receive 10 extra points.

3. This is an “all forward motion” parade. Performing groups should choreograph routines to maintain forward motion at the parade pace. No slow cadences allowed.

4. All entrants must conform to the description stated on their application. Any changes must be submitted in writing with a copy of your Entry Application. No changes will be allowed after April 20, 2017. The Parade Committee reserves the right to re-classify applicants.

5. All amplification systems must be noted on application and approved by the Parade Committee.

6. Judging will be done by an accredited judges association selected by the Parade committee. Parade units can only compete in one category. Each unit will be judged on its overall presentation and the judges’ decision will be final. If there is only one entry competing in a class or category, no cash awards will be made in that class or category.

7. No political entries will be accepted. No units displaying political advertising will be permitted to enter the line-up. Units discovered to have political advertising along the route will be removed from the line-up immediately. Currently serving elected officials may be invited to ride in the parade with signs identifying their current status. They may not campaign for re-election, nor may they display any electioneering materials in the parade..

8. LIMITATIONS: Only one motor vehicle per entry is permitted, except car and motorcycle clubs who may have up to 4 motor vehicles per entry and self propelled groups may have up to 20 self propelled vehicles per entry. Marching groups are limited to 50 participants. Equestrian entries are limited to 12 horses per entry. All entries are prohibited from passing out any written materials, such as, pamphlets, leaflets or flyers.

9. All entrants will be checked before entering the parade line. Any entry, which does not conform to this application or these rules, will be disqualified and may not be allowed into the parade and entry fees will not be refunded. Entries depicting violence, drugs, illegal activities, or otherwise deemed inappropriate will be disqualified from judging and will not be allowed into the line-up and entry fees will not be refunded.

10. Parade orders will be mailed approximately April 20th. You will be sent a Parade Route map, your unit assignment, your parade number and staging time. Please arrange to communicate this to your group prior to parade day.

11. Your signature on the parade entry form is evidence that you agree to all rules and will abide by those rules and the decisions of the Parade Committee and judges. Further, your signature on the entry form indicates that you agree that the LBR Parade & Festival (Luther Burbank Rose Parade & Festival), its Parade Committee, the City of Santa Rosa, and their associates, employees and agents, are released from any and all responsibility for loss, damage, or injury to any person or property relating in any way to participation in the Parade or Festival.


1. The deadline for entries is 5 PM, Friday, March 10, 2017. Mail entries to PO Box 11264, Santa Rosa CA 95406 or drop them off at the office – 5890 Pruitt Avenue Windsor, CA  95492.   Late entries or late completion of initial entry information is permitted, at increased fees, by 5 PM Friday, March 24, 2017. Please see fee details following.

2. Entry fees are not refundable. Once an entry has been accepted into the parade line up, entry fees cannot be refunded. If, for any reason, an entry is not accepted into the parade, fees will be returned.

3. The parade goes on rain or shine. All units must be prepared for rain or cold as well as sun and heat. Unless the Luther Burbank Rose Parade & Festival cancels the parade, all units will be expected to perform and no entry fees will be refunded.

4. Entry fees are as follows:

For Non-Commercial Entrants – nonprofit organizations, academic schools, veterans groups and individuals:
If application is complete by March 10          $65
Applications received after March 10            $140
A nonprofit organization is one that is a 501(c) tax-exempt organization. An academic school is one that offers academic programs for grades K-12.

For Commercial Entrants & All Others:
If application is complete by March 10          $200
Applications received after March 10            $350

For Equestrian Entrants – 4 Horses and Less:
If application is complete by March 10          $35
Applications received after March 10            $80

For Equestrian Entrants – 5-12 Horses:
If application is complete by March 10          $65
Applications received after March 10            $140

An application is considered complete when the following are received:

1. Application form with all information complete, including:

  • Check or money order for application fee, due at time of delivery.
  • Photocopy of insurance, as applicable (Generally, all entries containing animals or a motor vehicle must submit evidence of insurance.)

2. Applications received after March 24, 2017 will be considered only as space is available.

3. Special situations: ACADEMIC SCHOOLS may submit as many entries as they wish in one packet for a single fee. Applications received separately require separate fees.


1. Parade participants may not throw any item or items from their unit, float or auto. Costumed out-walkers may distribute appropriate items such as product samples, to the audience at the curb, but should not encourage the audience to leave the curb or move into the street. NOTE: Distribution of written material is NOT permitted.
2. Parade participants may not jump onto or off of any float or moving vehicle and may not interfere with any other unit in the parade.
3. Drivers of any and all vehicles in the parade must have a valid driver’s license and be at least 18 years of age. All motorized vehicles must submit proof of liability insurance with entry form.
4. Alcoholic beverages are forbidden on any float, in any vehicle, or on the person of any participant. Participants consuming alcohol prior to or during the parade will be removed from the line up.
5. Floats must have hand-holds or barriers to secure riders in the event of sudden stops or starts, chairs or seating must be attached to float-bed.
6. Floats must be constructed of fire safe materials and must carry fire extinguishers with a minimum rating of 2-A, 10-B:C on the float in the parade. The fire department will be present at the Float Workshop to discuss this. Please contact the Santa Rosa Fire Department (543-3500) for detailed information.
7.  All individuals on self-propelled and motorized vehicles must wear helmets as the law requires.

Livestock, reptiles, wild and domestic animals shall not be in the parade without specific written approval by the Parade Committee. Entrants are responsible for all animal wastes along parade route and in staging and disbanding areas. All entries involving animals must provide proof of current insurance with the entry application. Don’t forget those roses! (See Rule 2-General Parade & Entry Rules). EQUESTRIAN ENTRANTS – no stallions or proud cut geldings. must provide a pooper scooper.

A float is any fully decorated structure/vehicle that depicts the parade theme. Each float must be decorated over 90% or more of the unit. Floats may be decorated with fresh floral or natural materials or artificial materials. Bonus points will be awarded to floats using predominantly natural materials. Points will be deducted for undecorated truck cabs or tow vehicles. The maximum size of a float is 10 feet wide (8 1/2 feet will fit in a traffic lane to drive to the parade), 60 feet long, and 13 1/2 feet. Traffic lights and signs overhang the route; care should be taken not to exceed height limit. No persons will be permitted on floats that are not noted on the entry form. A MAXIMUM OF 12 WALKERS may accompany any float. Don’t forget those roses! (See Rule 2-General Parade & Entry Rules).

Antique & Classic Autos
These vehicles must be collector quality cars 30 or more years old. Don’t forget those roses! (See Rule 2-General Parade & Entry Rules).

Bands & Musical groups
All musical groups are required to play through the entire parade route. Penalty points will be applied for insufficient playing time. All band units should choreograph their performance for ALL FORWARD MOTION even at judge’s stand. Don’t forget those roses! (See Rule 2-General Parade & Entry Rules).

Self Propelled entries
A self propelled vehicle is one that moves only with the assistance of human power and is not limited to uni/bi/tri-cycles so be creative! (See Rule 7-Safety Rules For All). Don’t forget those roses! (See Rule 2-General Parade & Entry Rules)

Judging Criteria
All entries, except bands, must contain at least one rose, visible to the judges. Ten points will be deducted for entries failing to meet this requirement.

For Floats
25 POINTS maximum for each:
1. Design: artistic imagination, color combination, focal point grouping
2. Construction Details: Workmanship, material used, lettering, use of natural materials
3. General Effect: Beauty and overall effect, audience reaction
4. Theme: Communication of theme in design, relation of theme to parade theme.

All Units – Penalty Points
A maximum of 20% of available points may be lost for the following infractions:
1. Throwing things from unit
2. Delay of parade
3. Not observing ALL FORWARD MOTION

All Units – Bonus Points
Up to 5 bonus points may be awarded for:
1. Encouraging audience participation or response
2. All floral or natural decorations
3. 100% decorated vehicles (cab or tow vehicle decorated)

The parade route will be posted at a later date.

In the event more entries are received than can be presented in the parade, selection will be based on information in your application form. Please be as descriptive as possible when you complete the form. The Luther Burbank Rose Parade Committee will give priority to fully-decorated floats, marching bands, costumed/performing novelty or specialty groups, and equestrian units in order to design an entertaining and exciting parade.


Commercial Float
First & Second Place Awards
Nonprofit Float
First Place: $500 & Award
Second Place: $400 & Award
Third Place: $300 & Award
Fourth Place: $200 & Award
Fifth Place: $100 & Award


First & Second Place Awards offered in each class
Costume Group – Adult
Costume Group – Youth
Cultural Dance
Cultural Music
Heritage Costume
Other Cultural Display
Antique or Classic Auto


Non-School Band
First & Second Place Awards
School Band Class
First Place: $100 & Award each Class
Second Place: $65 & Award each Class


Indicate whether Non-School or Senior, Junior or Elementary Age Level
Drill Team
First Place: $65 & Award
Second Place: $25 & Award
Majorette Group
First Place: $65 & Award
Second Place: $25 & Award
Flag Team
First Place: $65 & Award
Second Place: $25 & Award
Color Guard Unit
First & Second Place Awards
Identification Group
First & Second Place Awards


First & Second Place Awards offered in each class
Drum Major Military
Drum Major Mace
Drum Major


Costume, decorations and theme required, humor recommended
Commercial Novelty Group

First & Second Place Awards
Nonprofit Novelty Group
First Place: $65 & Award
Second Place: $25 & Award

First & Second Place Awards offered in each class
First Place: $65 & Award
Second Place: $25 & Award


Please indicate whether active or reserve for proper placement in line up.
First & Second Place Awards offered in each class
Military/Veterans Color Guard
Veterans Group – Other


(Ponies competing with Horses)
Henry Trione Award – Best Overall Equestrian Entry
First & Second Place Awards offered in each class
First Place Individual & Nonprofit also receive $65

Working Western
Fancy Dressed Western
Authentic Novelty
Native American Costume
Arabian Costume
Silver Mounted
Color Guard Open
Color Guard Junior
Mounted Group
Matched Pairs
Horse Drawn/Pony Drawn Vehicle
Mounted Other
Future Horseman (Jr – can be lead line 1-8yrs)
Pooper Scooper:
First, Second, and Third Place Awards offered


Thomas P. Keegan Award: Best Entry Using Local History
Henry Trione Award – Best Overall Equestrian Entry
John Bugbee Memorial Perpetual Trophy:
Best County High School Entry
Sweepstakes Award: Best Unit in the Parade
Best Use of Roses
Best Use of Theme
Best Use of Recycled Materials
Best Use of Color
Best Tribute to Luther Burbank: Luther Burbank was very famous for inventing over 800 strains and varieties of plants. Honor his legacy by showcasing his inventions and/or experiments by tying your entry theme around his life’s work and win this award.


Entry deadline – Friday, March 10, 5 PM
Mail to PO Box 11264, Santa Rosa, 95406 or drop off at Wells Fargo Center for the Arts, 50 Mark West Springs Road, Santa Rosa

Late Entry deadline – Friday, March 24, 5 PM
Mail to PO Box 11264, Santa Rosa, 95406 or drop off at Wells Fargo Center for the Arts, 50 Mark West Springs Road, Santa Rosa.
Late Fees Are Required – Please read FEES section

Parade Orders Mailed Approximately April 20th.  Your place in the line up, parade number, division assignment, staging location, special information and a map will be mailed to you. Please make arrangements to communicate all information to everyone in your group.

Parade entrants Meetings  TUESDAY, May 2,  6 PM OR THURSDAY, May 4,  6 PM  LOCATION TBD

This is a good time to get your questions answered: about staging, judging, the parade route and disband directions. It’s best to send just one representative. you may attend either meeting.

Luther Burbank Rose Parade & Festival
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Parade steps off at 10am.

Family Fun Festival
Downtown Santa Rosa

Awards Ceremony
Downtown Santa Rosa