He smiled broadly and lifted both arms in an open and welcoming gesture. "Come here, honey."
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. This one left the ladies breathless.
|Johnny Depp meets the Tombstone Legends|
|Still a Wonder|
Back to the Roosevelt Hotel where one of our group noticed a quiet man with his family standing at the guardrails awaiting the parade. He looked a lot like Johnny Depp. A LOT. But this is Hollywood and look-a-likes are everywhere. Still there was something about him. Will Roberts,internationally known roper and gunslinger was doing his best to entertain the little group braving the rain when he says to the gentleman, "I bet you get this a lot: but you look a lot like Johnny Depp."
The man smiles and replies, "Yeah, I get that a lot."
As Will started to walk away, he heard the gentleman's companion call his name: Johnny. Seriously?
|J and L on the red carpet|
So about that parade.
The parade was shut down during World War II, but in 1946, the parades began again with Gene Autry as the Grand Marshall. As Gene Autry headed down the parade route, all he could hear were children shouting "Here comes Santa Claus. Here comes Santa Claus." After all, Santa was in the vehicle behind him, and we all know who the kids really came to see. Sorry Gene. Did you ever wonder what the inspiration was behind the song that has become a perennial Christmas favorite: Here Comes Santa Claus (Right Down Santa Claus Lane)?
|Gene Autry, long-time grand marshal of Santa Claus Lane|
The parade has grown. The route is now over three miles. (Try that in your high-heeled Victorian boots). And grand marshals have included astronaut Buzz Aldrin (last year), Charlton Heston, William Shatner, Ron Howard, Michael Landon and that other name you associate with Christmas, James (Jimmy) Stewart. There are floats, stars in fancy cars and on foot, marching bands, and such a festive holiday atmosphere, that if you weren't feeling in a Christmas mood when you arrived, we'd be shocked if you left without humming a little to yourself or hearing one of the songs in your head. That'll put you in the Christmas spirit.
And the purpose of all this? Well, of course, people love to see the floats, wave at the celebrities. Heck, we liked being psuedo-celebrities for the night. But Hallmark Channel, the primary sponsor of this parade, anticipates donating 1.5 million dollars to Toys for Tots through this parade and the related holiday season events. The US Marine Corps' Toys for Tots program provided over 16 million toys last year to 7 million children.
We certainly couldn't imagine a better reason to stand in the rain for hours than to benefit the children at Christmas.
|Merry Christmas from Hollywood to you!|