Festival of Balloons parade highlights Independence Day celebration

By Jenna Giulioni

Senior Staff Writer

Photos by Tiger Staff

South Pasadena kicked off its Independence Day celebration with the 34th annual Festival of Balloons on Saturday. The parade was led away from the lineup station around the public library by the South Pasadena Police Department and quickly followed by Boy Scout Troop 139.

Graduated SPHS senior Lena Gavenas rode down Mission, honored as South Pasadena’s Citizen of the Year. Classmates Shine Cho and Megan Mellon, two of the Oneonta Congressional Church Scholarship winners, waved to the crowd from a convertible. The SPHS band later rolled through featuring both newcomers and alumni.

“The Festival of Balloons has been a tradition since I was a kid,” South Pasadena native Mark Haines said. “It has never failed to impress.”

The parade came to a close with a choreographed dance performed by the South Pasadena and San Marino YMCA, along with both new and old trucks from the South Pasadena Fire Department.