As COVID-19 numbers continue to surge, forcing cancellations or postponements of events, organizers of the Rose Parade and Rose Bowl game said on Thursday that plans for those New Year’s Day traditions are going forward. However, they are prepared to adjust plans as necessary.
The Pasadena Tournament of Roses Foundation has set a precedent for such actions as the committee relocated last year’s game to AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, to allow spectators to attend.
“At the present time, we fully expect the Rose Parade and the Rose Bowl Game to be held as scheduled on New Year’s Day 2022 in beautiful Pasadena, California,” according to a statement from the Pasadena Tournament of Roses.
The only other time that the foundation held the Rose Bowl Game outside of Pasadena — before Jan. 1, 2021 — was in 1942 during World War II when the game was relocated to Duke Stadium in Durham, North Carolina.
“We are aware of the rising COVID-19 infection rates and are monitoring the situation very closely,” the press release stated.
On Wednesday, the Los Angeles Public Health Department reported 6,509 new cases of COVID-19, which doubled the previous day’s total.
“As we continue to work with the Pasadena Public Health Department in regards to their health order, we are confident in our ability to host both the parade and game successfully and in compliance with all the applicable government protocols needed to keep everyone safe. We are prepared to adjust our plans as necessary,” the statement reads.
The city and the Pasadena Tournament of Roses are installing new procedures to ensure this year’s events are safe and keep their audiences and participants healthy. In addition to a mask requirement, attendees must show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the event.
“The health and well-being of our parade participants and guests, as well as that of our volunteer members, professional staff and partners, remains our number one priority,” the foundation stated.
Last year’s Rose Parade was canceled because of the pandemic. This year’s event — themed “Dream. Believe. Achieve.” — will wrap up with performances by Grammy nominee Jimmie Allen, TikTok performer Timothy Fletcher the U.S. Army’s Golden Knights.
Ohio State will play Utah in the Rose Bowl game, set to kick off at 2 p.m. PST / 5 p.m. EST.