UNIONDALE, New York —
For some circus followers Saturday, it was an opportunity to say goodbye to beloved childhood reminiscences. For others, it was a bucket record achievement.
Lions, tigers and clowns, no extra. Oh my. It is curtains for the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
This weekend, probably the most well-known American circus ends its 146-yr reign as one of many world’s largest massive tops.
Ringling’s mum or dad firm, Feld Leisure, introduced in January it will take its remaining bow this yr. On Saturday afternoon, beneath cloudy skies, followers streamed into the Nassau Coliseum in suburban New York to pay their final respects to the long-lasting present.
“I’m unhappy that it is going to be over,” stated Melissa Angevine of Walton, New York. She and her husband drove 4 hours with their two youngsters Saturday to see the present “It is a pastime that not anyone will get to take pleasure in anymore, sadly. Everyone’s of their tablets and not likely going out and seeing totally different sorts of leisure anymore.”
Saturday night’s circus was an extravaganza of massive cats, motorbike stunts, clowns performing dying-defying stunts, ice skaters, buckets of popcorn and Mongolian contortionists – and that was simply the primary half of the present.
“I am turning into an grownup immediately,” stated forty six-yr-previous Heather Greenberg, of New York Metropolis. “I can not go to the circus with my daddy anymore.”
Greenberg and her mother and father, and her three youngsters, alongside together with her sister and prolonged household – 12 in all – clowned round, laughing and joking, as they walked into the present.
Her sister, Daybreak Mirowitz, forty two, of Dix Hills, New York, sobered as she contemplated a future with out the Ringling Brothers circus.
“We’ll by no means get an opportunity to take our grandchildren to the circus,” she stated.
Feld executives say declining attendance mixed with excessive working prices are amongst causes for closing.
Ringling had two touring circuses this season, one ending its run earlier this month in Windfall, Rhode Island.
The ultimate exhibits of what was lengthy promoted as “The Biggest Present on Earth” are being staged all through the weekend, with three exhibits Saturday and three Sunday. The ultimate circus present Sunday night time can be streamed on Fb Reside and on the circus’ web site.
Clarissa Williams, a 38-yr-previous keep-at-house mother from West Hempstead, New York, took her eight-yr-previous daughter, Nylah, to the present.
“I am grateful we get to see it earlier than it leaves,” she stated. “I pray that once they finish, they take the animals and put them in a protected, sacred place.”
A circus spokesman says houses have been discovered for the animals that have been owned by Ringling, together with the tigers, horses and camels.
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