Events for this year’s Patras Carnival in western Greece are coming to a climax this weekend, when the celebration season ends with the Grand Parade, the burning of the ‘carnival king’ and a fireworks display.
Up to 30,000 people have registered to participate in a night-time parade on foot that will be held on Saturday, as well as a Sunday day-time parade with floats.
The party atmosphere in the port city will kick off on Friday, with visual artists participating in the ‘Painting the Music’ on a pedestrianized Agios Nikolaos Road, followed by the city’s 53rd treasure hunt at Agios Georgios Square at 6 p.m.
At 8.30 p.m. on Friday, the Patras municipality floats accompanied by the band Bloco Swingueira will make a first appearance.
Carnival fun continues on Saturday, starting with the “chocolate battles” at 12.30 p.m. and followed by the night parade on foot (without floats) at 6 p.m.
The Grand Parade, the last of the carnival, will begin at 2 p.m. on Sunday and is led by the float of the carnival king, followed by the carnival queen (who this year is Olga Katsara), the Children’s Carnival floats, the 138 crews of the ‘Treasure Hunt’ and the “chocolate battle” floats.
Patras’ Grand Parade will be covered by state television channel ERT1. The theme of this year’s carnival is unemployment.
The last acts of the 2018 carnival will be the burning of the effigy of the carnival king at Agios Nikolaos pier at 9 p.m. and a fireworks display.
This last weekend of carnival is once again expected to attract a host of visitors to the port city, with hotels in Patras reporting that bookings are at 90 percent capacity and those in surrounding areas at 75 percent.