The Pasadena winter sunlight warmed up the crowd and shone on chiropractic's impressive eagle as it rolled down Colorado Boulevard. Perched on the Chiropractic Centennial float, waving to an estimated television audience of 450 million and another one million along the parade route, were the world-class athletes and entertainer Lee Greenwood singing "God Bless the USA" -- chiropractic patients all.
Network TV Spotlight
Millions of people heard the chiropractic message in 90 countries and in 12 different languages. The significance of the chiropractic float came through clearly on KTTV-Los Angeles, the FOX television network, when John Beard, one of its parade hosts, described the float this way: "... And it's the eagle with the majestic wingspread (which) represents the Chiropractic Centennial Foundation saluting America's and the world's athletes -- many of whom, I'm sure, have made frequent trips to chiropractors ... This year marks a century of chiropractic care."
The anchorman at KCBS in Los Angeles described the chiropractic float as "a float that makes you want to stand up and salute."
Gayle Anderson, reporting on the parade for local independent TV station KTLA, announced: "The Chiropractic Foundation is celebrating a birthday, 100 years of good health." KTLA is best known for its uninterrupted Rose Parade coverage in Los Angeles, the second largest television market in the country.
Even before the parade began, the float was grabbing exposure. Prior to its live coverage of the parade, KTLA featured the CCF entry in its parade preview show with an interview with Joe Morgan and Lee Greenwood.
One DC related a story that is typical of the attention the float garnered: a young patient came into a his office and said, "Hey, I saw your float in the Rose Parade yesterday ..."
Celebrity Patients Draw Attention
The biggest draw of the CCF float was undoubtedly the chiropractic patients that rode the float amid the cascading floral bouquets: country music performer Lee Greenwood; U.S. Amateur Gold Champion Tiger Woods; Hall of Fame baseball player Joe Morgan; and speed skater Cathy Turner, two-time Olympian gold medalist.
Although the float was the brainchild of the CCF, when it came to the tremendous undertaking of its decoration, DCs, chiropractic students, and Southern Californian patients and friends of chiropractic volunteered to complete the painstaking (and sticky) process of gluing seven tons of flowers to the structure. A busload of DCs from the San Diego Chiropractic Society, for example, drove up the coast to help.
The Chiropractic Centennial Foundation's float could not have been the spectacular success without the financial help from DCs around the country, and of course the experts responsible for creating the float: float designer Don Davidson, builder Tim Estes, floral director Jim Hynd, and the people at Fiesta Floats.