Rio’s Carnival parade is back, as street bands ache to party

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RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Starting Wednesday night, Rio de Janeiro samba schools’ elaborate floats and feather-festooned dancers will parade between packed bleachers.

As for the more than 500 street parties that usually run wild through the city, however, City Hall refused to grant them authorization, claiming it lacked sufficient time to prepare. That dissonance has sparked debate over whether City Hall is stifling Carnival’s essence, and if denizens should seize the streets as their own.

Some organizers couldn’t care less what is allowed; they will turn out anyway — part party, part protest. They insist celebrating Carnival isn’t contingent on authorities’ consent.

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