Sunday, November 20, 2011

Enart festival, day 3

20 November 2011

[Videos to be uploaded soon]

This was the final day of the ENART festival here in Santa Cruz do Sul.  I wish it happened more than once a year, I love it!

I even saw ENART on the bus.
Here is the interior of the food court.  Rather than waiting in line at the booths, it was full service (and therefore much more expensive than I expected).

I ordered a "Xis"  and pineapple juice.  It was good, and I was grateful for the chance to sit down and people watch.  One thing that the Oktoberfest park does not have, in my opinion, is enough benches scattered around the park.
 At the far end of the food court there was a folk song contest taking place.

Like the chula competition, the two singers alternated singing a couple of verses at a time.  If I understood right, the verses were of their own composition (or perhaps improv) to a set tune, as they mentioned Rio Grande and even the ENART festival.
 Dune buggies, cool!  Haven't been on one since I was about 8 years old...

It wouldn't be a gaucho festival without chimarrao.  This booth is selling erva mate, the crushed herb used to make the drink.  (They do not like to call it "tea"!)
 The herb is packed into the cup in a specific way, apparently you can't just pour it in any old which way.

 Then the water is added and finally the bomba, or straw-strainer, inserted.

 The flag of the state of Rio Grande do Sul flying from the top of a fire engine ladder.  I don't know why they didn't use the flagpoles as there are several around the park.
 We had to wait in line to get into the main exhibition hall (gymnasium) as this was the day the finalists perform.  The ushers were very organized, monitoring the traffic in and out separate doors and directions, and pausing the flow while dancers were performing (hence the wait).
 We were moving around the floor searching for anywhere above us that might have some empty seats.  It was crowded with spectators and participants both.
 Peeking through the flags at the dancers...
 Here you can see how crowded the stands were; we had to wait until someone left and take their spots as there were no empty spaces on the bleachers.  People stood up between dance groups to stretch legs and backs after sitting on the concrete bleachers.
 This group performed a dance that was clearly about the arrival of the European settlers and their meeting with the indigenous tribes, but I was not sure what the message was.  It seemed to portray the indigenous people in a less than flatterning light, in my opinion.
 One of the few shots I got from this distance that was actually in focus, yay!
 Someone having a bit of chimarrao in the stands.  You can see this at every event here, even Oktoberfest!

 The torch is also shaped like a cuia (chimarrao cup).  One of my students told me that part of the festival is that participants of the historical societies go on horseback to make the torch relay from another city, and this trip takes up to five days.
 There was a good bit of variety in the costumes.  The man on the left has over his shoulder the traditional case for the chimarrao kit.  Inside would be the cup, the thermos and the herbs.
 More costumes - check out this guy's hat!
 A booth was selling these totally adorable hobby-horses.  One little boy had just got one and he was too small to carry it properly so he kept dragging its little head on the ground, poor horsie.
 Another stop at the candy booth because they were actually cooking it right onsite.
 Another interesting thing - a cabbage head being used as a display for lollipops.  Why pay more for styrofoam?
 With my friends outside the park. :)

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