A 1925 White Motor Co. Glacier National Park Tour bus will transport the family of the president of the Tournament of Roses in Friday’s Rose Bowl Parade.
Workers were decorating the bus on Thursday for the annual parade in Pasadena, Calif.
The bus is owned by Bruce Austin, of Nye, and is on permanent loan to the Jammer Trust, a nonprofit educational corporation that he helped start to promote preservation of touring vehicles. Austin owns and has had restored a number of old Yellowstone and Glacier park touring vehicles.
Two of Austin’s restored park vehicles appeared in the 2009 Rose Bowl Parade.
Austin said the Glacier bus to be used in Friday’s parade was to be decorated in time for viewing by the parade’s grand marshal, Capt. Chelsey “Sully” Sullenberger, who piloted the U.S. Airways jet that landed in the river in what became known as the “Miracle on the Hudson” earlier in 2009.
Austin noted that the original bus, No 39 in the Glacier Park Transport Co, fleet began to be used to carry visitors through the park just 15 years after the establishment of Glacier National Park in 1910.
Beginning 2010’s centennial celebrations of the park, Billy, a stuffed mascot of the Glacier National Park Fund, will also ride in the parade.
By early Thursday, the stuffed mountain goat had been photographed by hundreds of visitors to the decorating tent, “and the story of the centennial celebration has reached thousands of people who otherwise would probably have never realized that Glacier was a century old,, much less where it is,” Austin wrote in an e-mail to The Billings Gazette.
“I have had 25 or 26 visitors tell me that they will visit the park this year with their families, rather than go elsewhere,” he added.
The parade starts at 9 a.m. MST Friday and will air in Billings on ABC, NBC, HGTV, TLC and the Travel and Hallmark channels.