Tell me about the mystery festival I saw today in Sunset Park, Brooklyn
April 28, 2012 7:43 PM   Subscribe

Tell me about the mystery festival I saw today in Sunset Park, Brooklyn

So today my friends and I came upon a group of costumed men (?) dancing with masks on and whipping each other on the calves. This blog posts has pictures and a youtube video of what we saw, but from last year. Can anybody tell me what this festival is all about? thanks!
posted by nanhey to Grab Bag (4 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Have you asked the park management? I'd imagine the park had to be rented out for this.
posted by LSK at 8:42 PM on April 28, 2012

I bet it was the "parranda-style march" staged by Occupy Sunset Park.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:52 PM on April 28, 2012

This may help (scroll 3/4ths of the way down):

On May 11, 2008, a late carnival celebration from immigrants from Tlaxcala, Mexico took place at Sunset Park. This celebration typically is held three days before Ash Wednesday, back in their hometown, as they travel, the celebration was held here a couple months later. It is noted for its Huehues dances (Huehues is a Nahuatl term that means the Elders, those who possess the knowledge), which are performed by Los Charros from Santa Catarina Yomitla, Ayometla, Tlaxcala. The charros portray a fight between the Good and the Evil that is believed to walk around within us. They fight these bad ghosts with the help of the Thunder God, which appears in the form of a whip.  As the dancers hit each other a cracker at the end of the whip explodes at each contact. As the images show, the use of the icon of Tonantzin-Guadalupe is widely used in their customs.

posted by kathryn at 9:05 PM on April 28, 2012 [1 favorite]

Further Googling leads me to believe that yes, this was the Carnaval de Tlaxcala (see first few paragraphs of the NYT story).
posted by kathryn at 9:12 PM on April 28, 2012

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