THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO MY TWIN BROTHER, BILL DYKES (1943-1995). WE WERE NOT ONLY BROTHERS BUT PARTNERS IN BUSINESS AND BEST FRIENDS!AND TO ALL THE "BUTCHERS" THAT HAVE PASSED ON TO THE BIG LOT IN THE SKY!
Good Morning from Sunny Sarasota..... Happy New Year
Most of you have been following the Ringling Federal Case that has been pending in DC Federal Court....The attach should bring you up to date on the GREAT News.......So enjoy New Years Eve...Some of us in Sarasota it will be the 4:30 PM New Year Eves Opening Performance of the Fantastic Ringling Gold Unit at Robarts Arena....
SIDEBAR: check out circusfans.org new portal "Grassroots." You can find out the latest status in all fifty states regarding animal Bills........CHECK IT OUT...
Animal rights groups contended the use of bullhooks and prolonged chaining of elephants violated federal law.
Celebrate the victory of Feld Entertainment in the federal case (ASPCA et al v Feld)! A victory for the circus, for animals, and for circus fans everywhere.
Our website ( www.circusfans.org) will soon have all the details. The federal judge has joined the fans in making the appropriate decision. The facts have been determined. Those paid to testify against the circus have been found out! Upon reading the judge's decision I can add only one word - "AMEN"!
This truly parallels what circus fans have been saying these past several years. The longer it takes for the arguments to be heard, the more facts surface, the more informed the public becomes, and greater is our victory!
Regards - Happy New Year!
Gary C. Payne - Chair Animal Welfare Committee Circus Fans Association of America
Feld Entertainment, Inc. Victorious in Case Brought by ASPCA and Other Animal Special Interest Groups
Federal Court Finds Plaintiff Testimony of Tom Rider Not Truthful
Dec. 30, 2009 – Feld Entertainment, Inc. announced today that a federal court dismissed a case filed more than nine years ago by animal special interest groups who sought to ultimately outlaw elephants in Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus. In its ruling, “the Court finds that Mr. Rider is essentially a paid plaintiff and fact witness who is not credible, and therefore affords no weight to his testimony regarding the matters discussed herein, i.e., the allegations related to his standing to sue."
Today’s decision reinforces the fact that plaintiffs’ manufactured litigation was based on the untruthful testimony of a paid plaintiff and witness who the Court found received at least $190,000 in payments as his sole source of income over the past eight years by animal special interest groups, their lawyers and an entity controlled by those lawyers, the Wildlife Advocacy Project. Furthermore, the Court ruled that “based upon his failure to complain, the Court finds that Mr. Rider either (1) did not witness elephant mistreatment when he was employed by FEI or (2) any mistreatment he did witness did not affect him to the extent that he suffered an aesthetic or emotional injury.”
“We are gratified with today’s decision because it is a victory for elephants over those whose radical agenda, if adopted, could lead to the extinction of the species,” said Kenneth Feld, chief executive of Feld Entertainment. “We look forward to focusing on what we do best – providing quality care to our elephants and delivering unique family entertainment options to the public.”
Induction Ceremony Honors New Members of Ring of Fame for Contributions to Circus Arts
The 23rd Annual St Armands Circle Ring of Fame induction ceremony takes place in St Armands Circle Park 1-3:30pm Sunday, January 17, 2010.
2010's honorees are: Tino Wallenda Zupe, a Highwire artist and grandson of Karl Wallenda; Rudi and Sue Lenz, a Popular Chimpanzee Act; Manuel "Junior" Ruffin, a veteran animal trainer, tent-master & train-master; Tony Steele, a Flying Trapeze Artist and Dime Wilson Family, a 2 generation clan who performed for nearly a century as clowns and in aerial & animal acts.
The Circus Ring of Fame has honored 66 people and groups for significant contributions to the circus. The Ring of Fame is located on the outer perimeter of the park in the center of St Armands Circle.
About 1,800 people enjoyed the annual (the Greatest "Little" Show on Earth)
Pal Sailor Circus 2009 Holiday Spectacular in Sarasota.
Sunday Afternoon December 27, 2009.
About 130 Students ranging from the 4th grade to the 12th grade and over 100 volunteers put on the show that continues this week Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 7:00 pm Some tickets still are available for each show.
For more info and how to donate to their capitol campaign to renovate the facilities with a new big top tent, bathrooms and dressing rooms check out their website.
Michelle Stapleton performs on the Roman Rings
Juggling fire Nick Slimck.
Morgan Hill and Emily Esclkangon during the old fashion bike act.
Alex Keifer performs during the ariel silks act.
Up and over Leah Barnett during the teeterboard act.
Nathan Deets and Keleigh Keleigh during the flying trapeze
Photos and Captions from the Sarasota Herald Tribune
See lions, tigers & bears at Big Cat Habitat by Cindy Allegretto
Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary, which provides a safe haven for rescued tigers, lions, bears and other exotic animals, has reopened for weekend tours and demonstrations. Shown here, one of the sanctuary’s tigers scales a waterfall project. The nonprofit habitat, 7101 Palmer Blvd., Sarasota, is open from 12:30 to 3 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Tickets are $6 for children, $12 for adults and $10 for seniors. Reservations are required. For details, call 371-6377. This announcement was published Dec. 21, 2009 in the Herald-Tribune
By Meg Jones of the Journal Sentinel Posted: Dec. 17, 2009 Because of a money crunch and low visitor turnout, Circus World Museum in Baraboo has closed for the winter. The museum board decided earlier this week to close the facility located at the site of the Ringling Brothers winter quarters and lay off four employees. Circus World Museum will reopen as scheduled May 22. Executive Director Steve Freese said the museum averages only 1,700 visitors between Jan. 1 and May 21 and about half get in for free because of promotions. And between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, only about 2,000 visitors come to Circus World Museum. Attendance this year was 62,000. Because much of the museum is outdoors, few people showed up last week and this week because of cold weather. "We have challenges just like all nonprofits," Freese said Thursday afternoon. "Our funding has been impacted by our donors because of what has happened to the stock portfolios." Freese pointed out that the museum, which celebrated its 50th year this season, closed during the winter between 1959 and 1991. Circus World Museum is owned by the Wisconsin Historical Society and most of the other properties owned by the society close down during the winter.
Advertising of the Dream Circus is seen in the rubbish in the city of Yakutsk, about 4,800 kilometers (3,000 miles) east of Moscow, Thursday, Dec. 24, 2009.
Eight tigers and a lioness belonging to a Russian traveling circus died during a 20-hour truck journey across Siberia, police said Tuesday. The animals were dead when they arrived early Tuesday in the city of Yakutsk, police spokesman Nikolai Sizykh said.
No cause has been determined, but among the possibilities under investigation are poisoning from exhaust fumes or food poisoning, he said.