NAMM Float Wins Craftsman Trophy at the 118th Annual Tournament of Roses Parade

January 2, 2007

The voices of the Oak Ridge Boys, a 100-person choir and a live drum circle brought the joys of making music to life on a float sponsored by NAMM, the trade association of the international music products industry, at the 118th Tournament of Roses Parade.

The NAMM float featured the theme “Natural Harmonies: Oh Say Can You Sing,” commemorating MENC: The National Association for Music Education’s National Anthem Project, and won the Craftsman trophy for Exceptional Showmanship and Dramatic Impact for a float more than 55 feet long.

The float, designed by Studio Concepts of Portland, Ore., was 24 feet high, 18 feet wide and 75 feet long. In honor of the National Anthem Project, the design of the float reflected American patriotism with a majestic 24-foot animated eagle decorated with amaranthus seed, flax seed and pampas grass at the front carrying two American flags in its talons.

In the back, a shield made of yellow mums and yellow straw confetti housed a choir representing outstanding vocal students from all 50 U.S. states called “America’s National Anthem Honor Choir.” The world-renowned Oak Ridge Boys, spokespersons for the National Anthem Project for the past year, were located at the front of the float and entertained the 8,000-person strong Rose Parade crowd with live performances of the band’s new song “It’s Hard to Be Cool in a Minivan.”

The National Anthem Project reteaches Americans the words and significance of the “Star Spangled Banner,” and champions school music education programs.

The musical float was viewed by millions in the United States who watched live media coverage of the Tournament of Roses on ABC, NBC, Univision, Tribune (KTLA), KWHY-22, HGTV (Home & Garden Television), Sky Link TV, the Discovery HD Theater Channel and the Travel Channel.

The float also had strobe lights and fireworks for effect, an image of Francis Scott Key, who wrote the “Star Spangled Banner,” and three smaller floats in front featuring choreography performed with large silk flags.

The parade featured 45 floats, 22 marching bands and 23 equestrian units. George Lucas served as the grand marshal of the event.

2007 was NAMM’s fourth year as a float sponsor in the Tournament of Roses Parade. In 2006, 2005 and 2004, NAMM floats took home the Grand Marshal, Bob Hope Humor and Isabella Coleman Trophies, respectively.

About MENC
MENC: The National Association for Music Education, the world's largest arts education organization, is the only association that addresses all aspects of music education. More than 130,000 members represent all levels of teaching from preschool to graduate school. Since 1907, MENC has worked to ensure that every student has access to a well-balanced, comprehensive, and high-quality program of music instruction taught by qualified teachers. MENC's activities and resources have been largely responsible for the establishment of music education as a profession, for the promotion and guidance of music study as an integral part of the school curriculum, and for the development of the National Standards for Arts Education. For more information, visit icon link

About MENC’s National Anthem Project
The National Anthem Project is MENC’s campaign to restore America’s voice through music education. A recent Harris poll found that two out of three American adults do not know all of the words to “The Star-Spangled Banner”—and many do not know which song the National Anthem is or why it was written. The project was formed on the principle that budget cuts to school music programs in recent years have led to dwindling opportunities for students to learn an important part of their cultural heritage. The National Anthem Project was launched to raise awareness about the importance of supporting and funding school music programs. For more information, visit icon link

About Studio Concepts Inc.
Studio Concepts Inc. was founded in Portland, Ore., in 1977. It designs, manufactures and manages parade floats, stage productions and related festival and event services. Studio Concepts Inc. operates year-round out of a 70,000-square-foot facility in Portland. The company employs a full-time staff of 26 experienced professionals including designers, sculptors, animators and engineers. The staff of designers works closely with each client in the development of a project’s concept, style and presentation. For more information, visit icon link