Tickets for Rio’s famous Carnaval parade, the centerpiece of Brazil’s annual pre-Lenten festival, sold out in record time Tuesday, January 10, organizers said.
In just 20 minutes, vendors sold all of the 23,540 tickets available for Rio de Janeiro residents to attend the two-night parade, to be held February 26 and 27.
Last year it took 48 minutes for tickets to sell out, according to the Independent League of Samba Schools, which organizes the parade.
Tickets still were available for buyers outside of Rio de Janeiro, and organizers estimated it would take 10 days to sell the remaining tickets.
The league reserves a large number of tickets for travel agencies and cruise ships that visit the city during carnival. Ticket scalping also is common.
The parade, held in Rio’s 70,000-capacity "Sambadrome" stadium, features 14 community groups, each presenting an extravagant spectacle in an effort to impress judges and win the title of Carnaval champion.
While there’s no prize beyond bragging rights, communities spend many months preparing for the parade. The groups are judged on criteria that include music, costumes, originality, floats, percussion and even the degree of enthusiasm among the paraders.
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