Blocos are simply neighborhood block parties. Having almost become extinct a few years ago, they are experiencing a resurgence in popularity that is quite startling. The Rio Times states that “Since 2009, blocos have been enjoying a resurgence after falling out of favor with the public. This year saw a 20 percent increase in attendance over last year’s record-breaking turnout.” In addition, “An estimated 3,000,000 people are partying in the streets of Rio at its over 400 blocos, or Carnival block parties.” Now that is a LOT of partying. Also to put it into perspective, the number of people that turn out to each of these blocos are in the tens of thousands! 75,000 alone attended the Simpatia é Quase Amor bloco in Ipanema; all within 3 city blocks!
What struck us as interesting was, first, the shear numbers of blocos (you can literally go from one to another 24/7 for more than a weeek) and two how popular they are when just a few years ago they were hard to find! Here in Santa Teresa, it was hard to avoid not getting in the middle of one for about the past two weeks. While it has been fun and offers one an instant party, last night at 10pm in the pouring rain we could hear a bloco in full swing; and isn’t Carnival over? We guess not for a few more days and bloco parties! Here are some more shots of blocos here in Santa Teresa.