Carnival in the Campo Santa Margherita
Frittelle: Venice's Carnival doughnuts

Final weekend of Venice Carnival

Venice Carnival costumes
Carnevale di Venezia has entered its second, final, and busiest weekend. A modest influx of acqua alta, or high water, have led to the postponement or cancellation of a few events, mostly because the Carnival's main stage is in the Piazza San Marco, which is the lowest-lying area of the historic center and the most prone to flooding. Fortunately, acqua alta occurs only at high tide, so the inconvenience lasted only a few hours at a time and didn't disrupt Carnival activities in less flood-prone areas of Venice.

Last night, when we took our dog Maggie for a walk, we saw two examples of Carnival's appeal to different economic strata and age groups: On the Fondamenta del Soccorso in Dorsoduro, elaborately-costumed Carnivalgoers were arriving at the Palazzo Zenobio for what we assumed was a masked ball; a block or two away, in the Campo Santa Margherita, crowds of young people were watching live ska and reggae music, drinking beer purchased at the Heineken booths, or buying slices at Pizza al Volo. (We skipped the beer and got ice-cream cones at the Il Doge gelateria, sharing the cones--though not the gelato--with our attentive dog.)

Here are some Carnival photos that Cheryl took yesterday morning in and around the Piazza San Marco:

Red costumes at Carnevale di Venezia 

"Better red than dead" appeared to be this couple's design theme.

Winged lion at Venice Carnival
The 2010 Carnevale di Venezia may have sponsored by the Italian Produce Council: The centerpiece of the Carnival decorations in the Piazza San Marco is a winged lion covered in fruits and vegetables (the Venetian counterpart to the Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota). 
Campanile di San Marco during Venice Carnival
Other Carnival props build on the vegetarian theme. Pyramids of apples, artichokes, and other edible design elements have been distributed around St. Mark's Square (in this case, with the Campanile di San Marco as a backdrop).

Basilica di San Marco during Carnevale di Venezia
A set designer might suggest that the domes of the Basilica di San Marco repeat the curve of the Carnival stage's framework, although it's only fair to point out that the basilica was there first.

Acqua alta in the Piazza San Marco
The morning's acqua alta didn't prevent Carnivalgoers from putting on boots and splashing around the piazza while the star of Maggie in Venice looked on.

Post-Carnival addendum: The 2010 Carnevale di Venezia reportedly set a new attendance record by attracting an estimated 150,000 participants and spectators during the event's final weekend.


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can you tell me who runs the carnival, i mean who's in charge of it?

Durant Imboden

It's run by the Carnival organization, which has a Web site at:


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