The annual South American carnival features colorful costumes and tasty food.
A group of Kansas University students are hoping to heat up Lawrence Saturday night with a spicy Brazilian-style carnival.
The carnival will differ from its Rio de Janeiro counterpart in that it's a saloon carnival, instead of the more prominent street version, and will have definite times to start and stop.
The carnival lasts from 8:30 p.m. to 2 a.m., while the famous Rio carnival runs 24 hours a day for several days.
Sponsored by Kansas University's Brazil and Portuguese Organization, the celebration has been held for 20 years in Lawrence, and for the sixth consecutive year will be held at Liberty Hall, 644 Mass.
The carnival's closest counterpart is New Orleans' Mardi Gras, but that differs from the South American carnival, said Alex Montgomery-Soares, organization president and festival coordinator.
``It correlates to Mardi Gras, but Mardi Gras is a one-place event in this country, while the carnival in Brazil is celebrated in every city and state,'' he said.
The Lawrence version will feature live carnival and samba music by Chicago Samba School, Brazilian food and drinks and colorful costumes.
``Most will dress in costume, some very simple and some very fancy,'' Montgomery-Soares said. ``I've been so busy I'll probably dress simple and go as a soccer player.''
The carnival is held because of the organizers' deep cultural and traditional ties to their Brazilian homeland.
``It's a tradition. It's socially expected, but it is also to feel at home away from home,'' Montgomery-Soares said. ``This brings back a good memory of our country. It's a very warm party and a celebration of our culture.''