Citrus Bowl parade joins Mizzou, Minnesota fans

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ORLANDO - Gloomy weather plagued cities around the Sunshine State Tuesday, but the Citrus Bowl parade was filled with color.

120,000 oranges, tangerines and grapefruit decorated parade floats for the annual event before the game.

Parade Director Stephanie Hanisak said organizers took a year to plan the parade.

"We work with each sponsor to design their float and make sure that it's something they want," Hanisak said. "We have probably about 100 volunteers for each float."

After the parade, the citrus fruits used for the floats are donated to the Society of St. Andrews, which distrubutes food donations to food banks across Florida.

"The whole entire thing was just awesome," said Serena Ivey, one of the Mizzou fans at the parade.

"I saw a lot of Minnesota fans and I came with a big crew so it was a lot of fun." said Tricia Hill, another Missouri fan.

"The last time the Gophers played on January first was over 50 years ago in Pasadena," said Jerry Jordahl, a Minnesota fan. "I was at the University at the time and of course didn't have enough cash at the time so I decided we better make it this year."

The parade is a yearly tradition between the Russell Athletic Bowl and the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl games.