By Jack Arnhold, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Some say Carnival is officially over, but the ‘blocos’ (Carnival street parties) don’t seem to have received the message. Though traditionally the festivities end on Ash Wednesday, there are many designated blocos continuing on through Saturday, March 9th, or ‘Sábado das Campeãs’ (Saturday of Champions) and Sunday, March 10th.
Saturday, March 9th sees an early start for any Carnival completists out there, with Bloco das Poderosas taking over Rua Primeiro de Março, in Rio’s city center at 7AM. This bloco is going to be huge, with none other than Brazilian superstar Anitta taking the helm. Expect plenty of screaming fans, teenagers, and gallons of Skol beats.
For anyone in the Lapa area, there will be three blocos taking place throughout Rio’s nightlife neighborhood, with the first bloco, Quizomba, starting at 10AM on the famous Rua dos Arcos. Quizomba is a bloco that celebrates diversity, so everyone is welcome. They will be playing a tutti-frutti of funk, samba, rock and much more.
Bloco Eu Amo Ceveja will begin at 1PM under the iconic Arcos da Lapa (Lapa Arches). Does a bloco called ‘I Love Beer’ need much more explanation? They’re promising an ‘insane drum section,’ plus DJ Serginho will be playing plenty of funk and MPB to keep the amber nectar flowing.
Berço do Samba will take place at Travessa Mosqueira at 4PM. This will be a more traditional, but no less bohemian, bloco, and it should carry on well into the night. Up the hill is also where the action is, with both bloco Chulé de Santa and Mistura de Santa happening in Santa Teresa this Saturday.
Chulé de Santa starts at 10AM and will feature lots of live samba and fun. While Mistura de Samba is paying tribute to the thirtieth anniversary of the Brazilian Academy of Cordel Literature at 5PM, with plenty of costumes from the North-East of Brazil. Both blocos are usually very family friendly.
For the more adventurous, there is the bloco Unidos do Caraxué happening on Rua Cerqueira, on the beautiful island of Paquetá at 3PM. This is about a one hour ferry ride from Praça XV in the city center.
For those in Rio’s ‘Zona Sul’ (South Zone), Bafafá bloco will begin at 9AM next to Posto 9 in Ipanema. There’s also Sem Saída to check out at 2PM on Rua General Severiano in Botafogo. Also in Botafogo is Pela Saco at 5PM on Praça Corumbá.
In the Copacabana area, revelers can head to Praça Manuel Campos da Paz at 4PM for Sufridos de Copacabana, or head to Costão do Leme, where Mulheres de Chico will be singing the songs of legendary MPB musician Chico Buarque at 4PM.
Sunday will see Monobloco take place on Rua Primeiro de Março in the city center. For anyone mad enough to want to attend this huge event, things should get underway at 8AM. Up the hill in the comparatively tranquil surroundings of Santa Teresa, Bonde da Folia will begin at around noon on Rua Fonseca Guimarães – featuring the neighborhood’s famous yellow ‘bonde’ (tram).
Boêmios da Lapa will be taking place at 2PM on Rua Alcindo Guanabara for one last bohemian hurrah until next year. Ipanema will again have an early start at Posto 9 for Conjunto Habitacional Barangal, which begins at 9AM.
Another large-scale bloco, Broxadão a Hora é Essa, will be happening at around 2PM on the corner of Figueiredo de Magalhães, on the famous Avenida Atlântica in Copacabana. And the last bloco of the South Zone will be Boka de Espuma, which is also fairly huge in size and not for the faint hearted. This will begin at 4PM on Rua Marques de Olinda, in between Rua Bambina and Rua Muniz Barreto.