Pasadena’s Characteristics and History Will Be Focus of Winter Masters Series at Senior Center

Crowd at the 1936 Tournament of Roses. – Courtesy photo / Facebook, @pasadenahistory

The winter term of The Masters Series at the Pasadena Senior Center, 85 E. Holly St., is scheduled Tuesdays, Jan. 21 to March 3, from 2 to 4 p.m.

Growing out of a tourist reputation founded on perfect winter weather, Pasadena has proved fertile ground for excellence in arts, culture, science and architecture. The winter term of The Masters Series, which embraces and promotes lifelong learning, will provide seven weeks of presentations and discussions that will explore interesting and surprising aspects of this small but complex city.

Individual talks are $15 each for the general public. Members of the Pasadena Senior Center register for the full seven-week term for $90.

  • Jan. 21: The Life and Art of Painter Jean Mannheim (1861-1945) – Richard Reitzell, author of “From a Versatile Brush: The Life and Art of Jean Mannheim,” will recount the German-born impressionist’s contributions to the early Arroyo Seco artist colony in Pasadena, his training in Paris and his rise to prominence as a major figure in the early California Plein Air art scene. There also will be a focus on the impact of the Arroyo Seco artists on Pasadena.
  • Jan. 28: Building a Rose Parade Float – Tim Estes, president of Fiesta Parade Floats, will discuss the many facets of the float business, from design and oversight of construction to completed flower-festooned conveyances. Fiesta Parade Floats has received the highest number of awards in Rose Parade history.
  • Feb. 4: Pasadena and the Tournament of Roses Parade – Members of the Tournament of Roses Parade Committee will host a presentation about the past, present and future of this iconic, world-famous annual event created in 1890 as a way to show off the bounty of wintertime flowers in Pasadena.
  • Feb. 11: Designing Compelling Transportation for an Unpredictable World – Geoff Wardle, executive director of the Transportation Systems and Design Department at Art Center College of Design, will explain design solutions for reshaping how people and goods will move from place to place in the future, and how ArtCenter is educating designers to lead the way.
  • Feb. 18: Pasadena Museum of History’s Current Exhibition “Starting Anew: Transforming Pasadena, 1890-1930” – Brad Macneil, director of education at the Pasadena Museum of History and curator of the current exhibition, will share insights into the museum’s exploration of a dynamic time in Pasadena’s history when the population grew from fewer than 5,000 to more than 76,000 in the course of four decades, and the ways many of the characteristics now associated with Pasadena came to be during that period.
  • Feb. 25: African American History in Pasadena – Adrian K. Panton, retired attorney with the California Attorney General’s Office and a member of the First African American Methodist Episcopal Church of Pasadena, will discuss the rich and complex history of African Americans in Pasadena.
  • March 3: The Gamble House: Inspirations and Revitalization – Michael Oddou of the Docent Council of The Gamble House will explore the Arts and Crafts Movement, the west’s fascination with Japanese design, and Henry Greene and the Gamble family in the context of turn-of-the-century Pasadena. There will also be a virtual tour of local Arts and Crafts homes.

To register, visit and click on Events, then Event Online Registration or call (626) 685-6702. For more information or to be placed on the mailing list, email

January 2, 2020

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