Hundreds enthusiastically decorate the floats that will decorate the streets of Pasadena this January 1

While chopping flowers in a plastic cup, Esther Hernández said excitedly that for the second consecutive year she was participating as a volunteer to decorate a float that will participate in the Rose Parade.

"From Mexico I was fascinated to see the parade on television and I said: 'When will I go to help?' And about two years ago I came for the first time," he told La Opinión this Friday from Irwindale, where some of the fleets are staying participants.

He arrived at the place with his son Edgar Olivera from Fresno, a city located three hours north of Los Angeles. His goal was to give his time to the carriage of Done Vida, which is called "Light in the darkness".

“By doing this, I feel like a pavoreal. I am very excited to participate, ”added the 64-year-old Mexican, while still working.

Esther Hernández (d) and her son Edgar Olvera are two of dozens of volunteers for the Done Vida float.

His son Edgar said he had volunteered for three years.

“I found out about this through a friend who works at the Consulate of Mexico,” he said. "And after I participated the first time I wanted to bring my mom and she really liked it."

At the same table of volunteers was Michelle Estrada, who is a nurse and for the first time attended to decorate the coach of Done Vida.

"For me it is important to be able to contribute to a very nice job … I had always wanted to participate but the list is quickly filled," he said.

Nicole Medina helped decorate Kaiser Permanente's float on Friday. (Jacqueline García / The Opinion)

In the Kaiser Permanente float, Nicole Medina put glue to start putting seeds in the decoration. She said she received the invitation to volunteer through an email.

"It is very interesting to see how everything is built from the beginning," he said and said that for the first time he will also see the parade with a new perspective as part of his work will go in the float.

The Dole company fleet will be in the Rose Parade for the tenth consecutive year and this 2020 will be titled "Sunshine for all".

Gladys Cárdenas, a spokesman for Dole, said the huge sun that represents much of the float is a sign of optimism.

"We have had hundreds of volunteers who have participated to decorate the float," he said while some of those people stuck seeds in the front of the float. "We want to carry the message that no matter where you are, music and positivism should follow you."

The volunteers are part of the 131st edition of the 2020 Rose Parade, which takes place in Pasadena.

This time, the parade will carry the theme “The Power of Hope” (the power of hope) where about 1,000 volunteers from the association participate to carry out the successful event.

In addition to them, thousands of volunteers participate months in advance to decorate the 39 floats that will be presented on January 1.

The parade also with the presentation of musical bands and horses.

Volunteers of the Dole float stuck seeds in the front. (Jacqueline García)

Volunteers with purpose

The Gutierrez family arrived yesterday at Irwindale from Delano, a city in Kern County in northern California, to participate in the decoration of the Done Vida float.

Sandra Gutierrez said her brother passed away 11 years ago and thanks to the donation of organs and tissues he was able to save the lives of three people.

"Five years ago the organization chose us to travel in the float of that parade and since then we have come every year to help decorate them," said the woman, who arrived accompanied by her husband Salvador Gutierrez and daughter Sally.

Sandra, of Mexican roots, said that having participated in the parade and knowing more about the importance of donating her brother's organs, who died from heart problems, has made them see life in a different way.

(Left to right) Sally Gutierrez with her parents Sandra and Salvador Gutierrez and nurse Michelle Estrada. (Jacqueline García / The Opinion)

Salvador agreed and said that he signed up as an organ donor for a long time and it seems like a good idea that if there is something that can be used after his death he gladly donates it.

"Besides, you never know when the family is going to need (some organ) and you want someone to always help you," he said. "When I leave (die) I will not take anything."

His daughter, Sally, said that participating in this volunteer event has also brought the family closer together since they have turned it into an event they come to and help without expecting anything in return.

"It is something that gives us a purpose and has the courage to know that we help," he said.


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