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Rose Festival Announces 2015 Starlight Grand Marshal

With an iconic pattern and more ‘foot selfies’ than a hosiery convention, the PDX Carpet — famed flooring of the Portland International Airport — has been selected as Grand Marshal of the 2015 Portland General Electric/SOLVE Starlight Parade (May 30, 2015). The Portland Rose Festival made this selection as a tribute to the millions of travelers and visitors who have walked on the one-of-a-kind carpet, as well as to honor the thousands of airport workers who welcome people each day to the City of Roses, now as the famous flooring is being replaced.

“In any other city in this country it would likely be considered weird to name a carpet as Grand Marshal of a major parade, but this is Portland, Oregon and we do weird very well here,” said Jeff Deering, Chair of the PGE/SOLVE Starlight Parade. “This carpet and its iconic pattern just blew up on social media with people from all over the world snapping off foot selfies before it’s gone. It was just too much fun to ignore.”

“Just when we thought we had seen the PDX Carpet reach the pinnacle of popularity, we get yet another pleasant surprise,” said Stan Watters, Port of Portland project and technical services director. “It’s an honor to have the Portland Rose Festival select the PDX Carpet as the Starlight Parade’s Grand Marshal, and a fitting tribute to the city’s welcome mat.”

The Port of Portland is currently in the process of replacing the beloved, nearly 30-year-old carpet. Because most of the old carpet is in poor or failing condition, it is being recycled. However, to meet the community’s desire to have a carpet memento, organizations have been selected to sell or otherwise provide the carpet to the community. (Related information is available at www.pdx.com.) Last year the carpet and airport served an all-time record 15.9 million passengers. In October, PDX celebrates its 75th anniversary.