Shreveport-Bossier, LA – Officials gathered in New Orleans today to announce Louisiana’s involvement on the national stage. The city of Shreveport-Bossier will be represented at the 2023 Rose Parade® in Pasadena, California, celebrating the rich history of two grassroots organizations in the northern Louisiana area. The show’s theme, “Turning the Corner”, celebrates the limitless potential that each new year brings.
“We are excited to return to the Rose Parade to showcase all the ways you can feed your soul in Louisiana. All of our riders are an excellent representation of the celebratory spirit of Louisiana,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser. “We love a parade in Louisiana and will kick off the Mardi Gras season a few days early on January 2nd when our float rolls through the streets of Pasadena.”
The Louisiana Feed Your Soul Float featured by Louisiana Travel at the annual Rose Parade® will depict a Louisiana icon – the riverboat or paddle steamer – entirely decorated with flowers, leaves and seeds. Country Music Association Award winner, 2022 Academy of Country Music New Woman of the Year winner and Louisiana Music Ambassador Lainey Wilson will perform midway through the parade to millions of viewers nationally and internationally.
“We are very excited for Shreveport-Bossier to be featured on a national stage,” said Stacy Brown, President and CEO of the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau. “This is the first time we have been invited to participate in the Tournament of Roses Parade with the State of Louisiana and the Office of the Lieutenant Governor. We are proud to introduce two treasures of our area, Shriner’s Hospital for Children and the American Rose Center. ”
Shriners Children’s Hospital in Shreveport, Louisiana was the first hospital established in the Shriners Children’s system and celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2022. Shriners Children’s Hospital is a unique pediatric healthcare system with a reputation for finding answers and giving hope to families. Since the opening of the first hospital in 1922, it has been its mission to provide high-quality, innovative and comprehensive care, conduct research to improve medical care options, and provide educational opportunities for physicians and other healthcare professionals.
Amber DeFatta is one of thousands of children whose lives have been changed by Shriners Children’s Hospital. After receiving treatment for Trevor’s Disease, a rare bone condition found in one in 1,000,000 children, DeFatta now volunteers at the hospital and helps raise awareness of the care they provide to children across Louisiana. She will be on the Louisiana Office of Tourism’s 2023 Rose Parade® float, representing Shriners Children’s Hospital in Shreveport, Louisiana.
The American Rose Society is a non-profit educational organization working to promote the beauty, culture and preservation of the rose. The home of the headquarters, the American Rose Center, is in Shreveport, Louisiana. The 118-acre garden is the largest dedicated rose park in the entire country and features over 7,000 rose bushes – and over 400 different types of roses. They celebrated their 47th flowering season in Shreveport in 2022, however the American Rose Society celebrated 130 years in 2022.
Diane Sommers is the 57th President of the American Rose Society and will participate in the 2023 Rose Parade®. She has been growing roses for over 40 years and currently grows more than 200 varieties. Sommers has served as treasurer of the ARS, district director of the NCD and regional director of region 5, in addition to chairing many ARS committees. More recently, as chair of the Strategic Planning Committee, Sommers has led the implementation of technology solutions that increase access to quality programs and speakers for consultation from rosaries, local rose societies, and members. She was president of two local rose societies and received the ARS Silver Honor Award and two Bronze Honor Awards for her contributions. Sommers was also recognized with the ARS Outstanding Consulting Rosarian Award and the ARS Outstanding Judge Award for service rendered. She is an ARS Master Rosarian, Accredited Horticulture and Arrangement Judge.
The 2023 Rose Parade®, part of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses®, will take place on Monday, January 2nd. Hundreds of entries will float along the 5.5-mile route, and the parade will air live at 8am PST on ABC and NBC affiliate networks. Check your local listings for exact times.