In the latest gender reveal celebration gone awry, a couple is being accused of possibly causing environmental damage after an entire waterfall was dyed in their honor. The Washington Post reports the incident took place Sunday in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso, where the 59-foot Cachoeira Queima-Pe waterfall plunges into a river by the same name. Video posted on the couple's social media accounts—since deleted but now circulating elsewhere online, per Insider—shows people embracing on the river's edge as the baby's sex is revealed with blue smoke plumes and music. And also with what Insider describes as "unnatural, electric blue" streams that resembled Gatorade pouring from the waterfall into the larger body of water.
The internet wasn't happy, as the waterfall is located in an area known for its ecotourism sites, and because the river is a source of fresh water for the city of Tangara da Serra, which has been mired in a bad drought for the past few years. "Seriously, they thought it was a good idea to put dye in a waterfall?!" one critic railed online. "So many ways to [do a gender reveal] and they managed to choose ... one with an environmental impact." SEMA, the state's environmental protection agency, was similarly miffed at the stunt, with a spokesperson telling the Post that what happened was a breach of the nation's environmental laws.
Investigators headed to the scene to test the water, and it didn't appear to have been altered, but the probe is ongoing as to what was used to dye the water. Just the act of dumping certain substances into Brazilian waters is illegal, though, with possible fines ranging from $920 or so to nearly $9,500. SEMA tells the Post that one of the celebration's hosts told the agency they hadn't known anything chemical would be used to dye the water and blamed a relative, whom SEMA has IDed and "called in for charging." In its own release, SEMA notes that "one of those responsible" has insisted that "no chemical product was used." Meanwhile, Insider notes that water dyeing may not be that uncommon of a gender reveal trend, as evidenced on TikTok. (Read more gender reveal party stories.)