BATON ROUGE, La. (WGNO) — Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser invited United Cajun Navy founder and president Todd Terrell to be one of eight Louisianans to represent the state in the 133rd Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, Calif., on New Year’s Day.
Joining Terrell on the float will be aspiring astronaut Alyssa Carson, Miss Louisiana 2021, American Idol winner Laine Hardy and the Grammy-nominated Hot 8 Brass Band, as well as fellow riders representing medical workers, law enforcement and educators.
Starting in 2018 as a volunteer group, the United Cajun Navy is now a 501 (c)3 nonprofit organization that has sent its members to more than 20 disaster zones, including land-based events like those in the recent tornado-ravaged areas of Kentucky and well as nearby areas recovering from Hurricane Ida.
“The United Cajun Navy has grown exponentially over the last few years thanks to the kindness of volunteers and donations of time, money, services and goods,” said Terrell. “Their generosity is what allows us to help other people in their extreme time of need. As people consider their year-end giving, we hope they will donate what they can to help our neighbors in dire need.”
According to a press release from the UCN, Louisiana’s float will “depict the spirit of the Bayou State, showcasing moss-draped cypress trees, a Cajun fisherman in a pirogue, sculptured magnolias, pelicans, crawfish, crabs, and powdered sugar covered beignets. An iconic wrought-iron balcony and French Quarter-style lampposts will also be highlighted on the Louisiana Tourism float. American Idol winner and Louisiana music ambassador Laine Hardy and the Hot 8 Brass Band will perform mid-parade on a stage in front of the Louisiana tourism logo ‘Feed Your Soul.'”
The Rose Parade will be broadcast on Saturday to 37 million viewers across the world.