For 45 years now, children in a small village called Juaba, in the Amazonian state of Pará, have been taking part of a carnival party that is an environmental and sustainability manifesto and surreal cuteness rolled into one.
Welcome to Cordão da Bicharada (which roughly translates as ‘animal block party’), a day during the carnival holidays when local children go out dressed up as animals who live in the forest around them.
If you happen to be in the village on that day, you will encounter kids dressed as araras, alligators, snakes, boto dolphins and many other animals associated with the Amazon forest.
This carnival block party for the children traces its roots back to 1975, when Mestre Zenóbio had the idea to pay homage to the animals during the festivities.
Sustainable carnival costumes
Costumes are made from vegetable waste, burlap and other non-organic waste materials that may be available, including foam and shag.
The first edition of the party had about 20 costumes. Now, the number is upwards of 120 animal costumes.
The realism of the costumes has called the attention of one of Pará’s most famous singers, Gaby Amarantos.
The pop star has used her Twitter profile to give this beautiful initiative some publicity and urged the mainstream media to give it the kudos it deserves.
“For more than 40 years, the block party has been teaching kids and adults to respect the Amazon carnival. I wish Globo Network would show this, also because it is total cute overload,” she wrote.