Wednesday, October 31, 2007

CarnEvil's new home

Belly dancers twirled wands of fire, drummers with grass skirts and tribal accents pounded out the rhythm, and hundreds of costumed partiers crowded the stage at Amos' Southend on Saturday.

The annual CarnEvil party took its debauchery, freakishness and flame-lovin' ways to Amos' Southend this year. In past years, it was on Hawthorne Street at an old warehouse. Amos' isn't big enough to hold the hundreds of people who pack the party, so organizers took over the parking lot between Amos' and the Gin Mill as well.

Carnevil is one of my favorite Halloween parties because you have to wear a costume and there's so much to do. When we got tired of watching the belly dancers, we went outside. Inside a dance tent, women crammed into a makeshift cage trying to dance sexy. It's hard to be sexy with fake blood dripping down poles and a maniacal clown suspended above the cage. They tried anyway. There was also a dance platform for other exhibitionist dancers.

Outside the tent, a space suit thing that spun you around (not a good mix with alcohol) sat empty. Surprise, surprise. Next to it, a few brave souls warmed up their routine for their fire tricks performance. Several people crowded in front of the baby-tossing booth. Yep, baby-tossing. A woman hurled a baby doll into the mouth of a giant mechanical clown head. The mouth opened and closed, and she missed.

We ventured back inside and cruised upstairs. On one side, people were getting Tarot card readings. On the other, people were being whipped by a dominatrix. On the main stage, Big Mamma performed a song followed by one of her burlesque dancers.

The only drawback is that there is never enough bar staff for CarnEvil's crowd. They had three bars open and two beer tubs -- and the lines were still long.