Actor and director LeVar Burton will be the 2022 Pasadena Tournament of Roses grand marshal, officials announced Tuesday.
“I come from a family for whom the Tournament of Roses Parade and the Rose Bowl game to follow, has been a part of our family for years and years,” Burton said. “We are over the moon, beyond thrilled to be a part of this amazing event.”
The Pasadena Tournament of Roses 2022 theme is “Dream. Believe. Achieve,” which is meant to celebrate education’s ability to change lives.
Burton spoke of his mother, saying, “She knew that I would grow up and inherit a world that would sometimes be hostile to my presence, simply because of the color of my skin. And she knew that in order for me to reach my most full potential in life, I needed to be able to have an education.”
“Education has given me the life that I lead, because my education was tied to a dream,” Burton said.
Burton, known for his role in the “Star Trek” franchise, was also the host and executive producer of the PBS Kids educational television series “Reading Rainbow,” which won him a Peabody Award and multiple Daytime Emmy and NAACP Image awards.
In 1990, he was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his lifetime achievement in entertainment.
“I am a living breathing proof that dreams do indeed come true,” the award-winning actor added.
The grand marshal will ride in the 133rd Rose Parade and participate in pre-game celebrations at the 108th Rose Bowl Game on Jan. 1, 2022.
Marking a longstanding Southern California tradition, thousands flock to Pasadena every New Year’s Day to see elaborately-decorated floral floats, marching bands and high-stepping equestrian units making their way down Colorado Boulevard.
The 2021 Rose Parade was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, with residents instead seeing the floats and musical performances in a two-hour television special on New Year’s Day.
It was the first time in 75 years that the beloved New Year’s Day tradition wasn’t be held in person. It had been canceled just three times before, during World War II.
Bands originally slated for the 2021 parade will be featured in the 2022 event, which brings together thousands of performers from across the United States and around the world.
The Rose Parade begins at 8 a.m. on New Year’s Day.
The parade route is 5.5-miles long, beginning at the corner of Green Street and Orange Grove Boulevard in Pasadena. Visitors can camp out for a free spot in designated areas throughout the route, or buy tickets to sit in bleachers.