I have many fond memories as a child taking the trip into the city to see the Circus with my family. It was a big deal for us as a kid to see the show, eat popcorn and cotton candy, and to talk my parents into some over-priced souvenir. We only went 2-3 times as a kid but I remember how big everything was under the big tent!
Fast-forward to my life as a parent and neither of my kids have ever seen a circus. My oldest is 11 and we’ve talked about it several times but just never made it to a show. My youngest will be turning six in January and the circus just happens to fall over her birthday weekend! What better time to take the kids to their first circus. Thank you Feld Entertainment & Amalie Arena for providing complimentary passes for the show so we can make these memories with our children.
Interesting facts about the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus:
Did you know that the first Ringling Bros. Circus was back in 1907? James Bailey and P.T. Barnum merged their show with Ringling Bros in 1919. There were several changes (mostly within the family) between 1937 and 1967, when the Feld family purchased the Circus. Feld managed the Circus until 1971 when he sold it to Mattel and finally bought it back in 1982. It was somewhere around that time that I went to my first circus, but I don’t know the exact year. It’s still run by the Feld family.
There are so many elements of a circus and the performances that just amaze me. Not only do you have animals or train and coordinate, but you have hundreds of acrobats, tightrope walkers, BMX riders, ariel artists, clowns (and not the creepy kind), and even the human cannonball! I can’t wait to see the Circus through the eyes of my own children and I’m excited to see how my own memories compare.
The Circus is such an iconic part of our history and I’m glad that it hasn’t gone away. I am glad that there have been advances and greater care to the animals and the performers. Ringling Bros. even started the Center for Elephant Conservation in 1995 as a place to breed, research, and as a retirement home for this gentle giants. The center is located in Central Florida between Tampa and Orlando.
Would you like to enter to win a Family 4-Pack of tickets to the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus XTREME in Tampa on Jan. 1st? Complete the Rafflecopter entry form below and I’ll select a winner on Dec. 26th from all entries received by midnight ET on Dec 25th. The winner will pick up their tickets at will call on the day of the Circus. *Does not including parking or transportation.*
BUY EARLY AND SAVE XTREME! Use coupon code MOM4 and save $4 off each ticket to the Tampa show! Offer valid only for Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday 11:00 a.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. performances. Not valid on Front Row and Premium seats. Not valid day of show. Excludes opening night performance on Thursday, January 1. Hurry, as this offer is only valid Dec. 12-26! To purchase tickets call 800-745-3000 or go to Ringling.com. Tickets start at just $16. Tickets include the all-access pre-show an hour before the show to visit the animals and performers!
Have you ever been to the Ringling Bros. Circus? What were your favorite memories? Did you have a favorite act or a favorite treat that you could only get at the circus? Popcorn? Cotton candy? Leave a comment below and share your memory!
Disclosure: Feld Entertainment provided us a Family 4-Pack for the Tampa show and will be providing the giveaway pack as well.
Now, I will admit that I was hesitant to share my excitement with you over the circus. After all, why would “The Eco Chic” write about another show that uses animals in their performances. I know that many of my fellow green bloggers don’t agree with the ethics of the circus and animals performing for our entertainment. I’m not an animal rights activist and I actually enjoy some animal performances. I visit zoos, we frequent Sea World, and yes, we’re going to the Circus! If you happen to have strong feelings about the Circus, perhaps this is one post you’ll want to skip over. Trust me, I understand where you’re coming from and you don’t need to leave me a million comments trying to convince me that I’m wrong. Kind and respectful comments will be left. Rude, disrespectful comments will be removed!