Thousands of revelers took part in colourful street parties in Rio de Janeiro ahead of the famous Carnival. Though official carnival festivities are only scheduled to begin on February 24, Rio locals and tourists danced in several blocos, or street parties, around the city. In the botanical garden neighborhood, revelers took part in the “Forget Me” bloc party. Their theme this year was the goddess of the sea, Iemanja. Holding balloons of sea animals and wearing seashells and floats, revelers danced under a scorching sun to the sound of drums and samba.