Guatemalan Carnival Cascarones

Cascarones de Carnaval

Okay, I will let you do the caption this time… just fill in with your comments.

© 2008 – 2013, Rudy Giron. All rights reserved.

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  • Jerry T

    How fun!I have had quite a bit of the confetti from these eggs on my lawn. We either buy them at the grocery store here on the edge of East Texas or at the Farmer’s Market in Houston or the Mexican Market in San Antonio. Neither are as interesting or as colorful as the market in Guatemala. They are an Easter tradition here and a tradition imported from Mexico.

  • sompopo

    Head smashing fun. 🙂

  • Jerry B

    Jerry T, what town are you in? I’m in Dallas. Rudy, I think all your Jerrys are from Texas! 🙂

  • Memories… on the corners of my mind… well, of confetti and egg shell pieces inside my shirt and on my hair… hehehe. I can hear Dora the Explorer(TM) saying “Abuelita, bring me more cascarones” or something like that.

  • Wow!!!Memories!!!Cascarones haven’t seen those in 26 years. We use to make them ourselves as kids. And smash them on other kids heads. It was great.

  • Claudia

    I would ask my grandma and my mom to start saving and drying them out before carnaval. . my sister and I would make our own pica pica . . I remember getting blisters (from the scissors) Those were definitely some fun times. Thanks Rudy . . .

  • Oh my! I’m getting flashbacks. We used to run after each other at school with these cascarones as ammunition. Of course, with all the commotion, we were also responsible for cleaning up afterward. I got such joy from smashing a cascaron on someone’s head. Heehee. The fun was not the same when someone smashed a cascaron on my head though. I remember some of the teachers got into the action as well.

  • They look like eggs. Are they thrown at people? In parades? Very cool.

  • Just to add to the captions and as clarification for Lessie. Cascarones are literally egg shells. So, as some have said, weeks in advance every egg cooked at home is carefully cracked so that most of the shape of the egg is kept intact and left to dry. Then, before Carnival Tuesday (the day previous Ash Wednesday which is the first day of Lent) the empty egg shells are filled with confetti (mainly very little pieces of tissue paper, but sometimes metallic paper and in olden times flour), and then are sealed with a piece of tissue paper and glue.
    I guess it depends on each person, but the egg shells are decorated before or after being filled using watercolours or tempera (some sort of finger paint) or even markers. Not quite like Easter Eggs because they mark the beginning of Lent, not the end of it, and they have no actual egg inside.

    What do we do with cascarones? Well, young people (i.e. children and/or children at heart) smash them on the heads of unsuspected victims. Since there is usually a costume party involved with Carnival you don’t know who your victimizer is. The confetti gets inside the back of your shirt along with pieces of egg shell and your hair is also a mess (particularly if you have curly hair). Is the last day you are allowed to be a brat before the 40 days of behaving start.

  • Mario

    Great explanation. Could not have been said any better.

  • Pat

    What a colourful photo! Really interesting!


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