Carnival in Italy is a big deal. Throughout the month of February, almost every city in Italy is invaded with costumes, masks, confetti, and a ton of parties that creates a very exciting atmosphere. Carnival is the last celebration before lent begins where Catholics give up something for 40 days until Easter in April. Many compare Carnival to Mardi Gras since they are during the same time period and have the same purpose. In America, Mardi Gras is a celebration where people party in crazy costumes, masks and beads all throughout the night. However, what many didn’t know is the many similarities and differences between Italian Carnival and Halloween. Carnival is important in Italy because it celebrates the Italian tradition that is slowly disappearing. Halloween shows the innovation of fashion based on movies, people and trends.
For both Halloween and Carnival, everyone dresses up in costumes. In America, the costumes are very creative, but for Carnival, everyone wears very traditional costumes that dates back centuries. Of course for Halloween, people party a lot but Carnival is on a whole different level. For Carnival, there are block parties all around the city, subways and buses are packed with drunk people, and many streets are blocked off to people drinking in the streets. Another similarity I noticed was that many people in both situations celebrate each tradition greatly and go all out. The main difference in these two traditions is their purpose. Carnival and Halloween are celebrated in totally different months and seasons.
One thing that I learned was that in Italy, Halloween is adjusting and becoming more popular, and in some cases, more popular than carnival. Of course in cities like Venice, Viareggio, and a few others where carnival is a serious matter it hasn’t, but in many cities, the towns do not invest much into their celebration as compared to Halloween. Many Italians will say that Halloween is slowly taking the place of carnival. But overall Carnival was a great experience. The entire city of Venice, and in a similar case Arezzo, erupted with music, life, costumes, and it became a huge party.