A Trip to Pasadena, CA for the Rose Bowl!

This a hard post to write. I was so so so excited to go to Pasadena, CA and see the Hawkeyes play in the Rose Bowl…and the game was basically over after the first quarter. It was so disappointing and I could not help but feel awful for the guys playing on the field. They had such a tremendous season. It is too bad that it ended like it did. But 12-2 is amazing. I still love the Hawks and cannot wait for next season (not to mention the basketball season going on right now).

My itinerary for this trip kept changing up until a couple of days before I left. I booked my flight the day it was announced the Hawks were heading to the Rose Bowl but getting tickets to the game was tricky. Once I finally secured a game ticket, I switched my hotel from a hotel in downtown LA to a previously unavailable hotel in Pasadena for ease of movement (I didn’t have to rent a car since I could walk everywhere). After my fiasco trying to get back to Dallas from Christmas, I decided to switch my flight to CA from 12/31 to 12/30 to give myself extra time in case there were delays or cancellations. Fortunately, everything went smoothly and as planned.

The atmosphere leading up to the game was incredible. There were so many Iowans in California for the game. It was amazing to see. From the airport to restaurants to the Pasadena streets to the Rose Bowl itself, there was black and gold everywhere.

The day before the game, I decided to head over to the stadium to get some photos before the craziness of game day. Luckily for me, several of the parade floats were being lined up and finished so we could view them and take photos. They were all so amazing!

The dragon float below breathed real fire.


I loved all of the colors on the float below.


American Heart Association – get moving!


You cannot really tell but there is a hummingbird on the top branch of the float below. That must have been one drunk hummer by the end of the night with all of those flowers!


Such a cute owl! Hoo hoo


“Find You Adventure” was the theme of the parade. I like this theme for myself for 2016 too.


I did get a few photos from outside of the stadium too!


The next day, I headed to the parade. I was worried about this because I did not reserve a seat beforehand and everything I read and was told while asking locals said I wasn’t going to be able to get a decent view because people camp out the night before and secure all the good spots. Luckily for me, I got up early and was able to find a spot where I could see over the people in front of me pretty well. While the spot was good for viewing, it was not great for taking photos because it was in between the sun and shade. But I did the best with what I had.

I loved this float. The little bird in the back went around and around and around in its umbrella.


The main reason I went to the parade and my favorite part – the Iowa cheer squad and band! Fight, Fight, Fight for IOWA!


These were a few of the poop picker uppers. They had a group following every group of horses or donkeys. It wouldn’t be my first choice if asked to volunteer. I did enough of that growing up.


After the parade, I headed to the stadium for the game. The neat looking buses that dropped the team off.


The best part of the weekend is that I got to see this beautiful lady! She lives in Iowa, I lived in Texas and we had to fly to California to see each other. She is a great friend from college that I haven’t seen in too long. It was great to catch up!


Before the game


A pano of the stadium. So much black and goal!


The Stanford band performing sat halftime with the cow that kept tipping over. For the record, I lived on a farm for over 18 years and never tipped a cow.


I love this view of the stadium


One last shot of the marquee as I was exiting the stadium. It was so pretty lit up!


And with that, the trip came to a close. I flew back earlier today and I swear I was flying out of CID/DSM West instead of LAX. Once again, there was black and gold everywhere! Go Hawkeyes!


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