The 69th Annual Camellia Festival will begin on Friday, February 22, 2013.
Written by SABRINA FANG / Published February 22, 2013
The city will hold its 69th annual Camellia Festival, themed “Once in a Lifetime”, at Temple City Civic Park on Friday, February 22 to Sunday, February 24.
Thousands of visitors will come to participate in the festivities, enjoying the many booths, games and carnival rides the festival has to offer. Visitors will also be able to watch the annual Camellia Parade featuring many of the city’s youth, organizations and council representatives on Saturday morning.
The tradition of the Camellia Festival first began as a small parade in 1945 when Sharon Ray Pearson, at just eight months old, was crowned queen and rode down Las Tunas Drive in an open car. A number of Camp Fire Girls handed out Camellia blossoms to audience members in honor of the event, proudly representing the slogan “Temple City Home of the Camellias.”
Since then, the Camellia Festival has grown immensely in size and popularity. The three-day celebration attracts about 20,000 local and out-of-town visitors each year, about 5,000 of them being children. The parade features more than 70 local groups and organizations, including the Temple City High School Marching Band, local Boy and Girl Scout troops, and the Camellia Festival Royal Court.
“What makes the festival unique is its focus on the youth of the community,” says Miss Temple City 2012 Brittany Bravo who will be participating in this year’s Camellia Parade, “being a part of it just makes me feel really happy because I always make a lot of good memories.”
The Camellia Festival celebrates Temple City as a one community and encourages young people to participate in their local community. The festival is one of Temple City’s strongest and most celebrated traditions. This year’s festivities promises to be a “once in a lifetime” experience.