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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Circus bringing Big Top to area

Staff Reporter•The Tinidad Times

March 29, 2011 RATON, CO — The year was 1935, and many people lined up to buy tickets to see their first circus. The smell of popcorn and cotton candy filled the air. In the 75 years since then, the Carson and Barnes Circus has continued to roll out its city-block-long tent in some 200 towns and cities each year during its 10-month season.

The nearly 100 animals and performers of all sorts are coming to Raton this weekend. The Oklahoma-based circus features acts from around the world, a European style big top and theatrical lighting and music. It will be held Sunday, April 3, at the Raton Rodeo Grounds on York Canyon Road (N.M. 555).

Show times are 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.

When the circus sets up on the morning of the shows, the public is invited to watch as the first units of the caravan begin arriving about an hour after dawn. People, elephants and technology work side-by-side to erect the big top.

The Carson and Barnes Circus has two dozen types of exotic and domestic animals, featuring a large traveling zoo.

The performers are artists from around the world, including the United States, Mexico, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Russia and Italy. Acts consist of aerial trapeze, high wire, motorcycle acrobatic teams, jugglers and clowns, along with performing elephants, camels, dogs and horses. Special this year is an award-winning clown Alex, called the “King of Comedy,” who will perform high-bounding feats on the trampoline.

The Kiwanis Club brings the circus to Raton as a fundraiser to support local youth programs. The circus is also supported by local sponsors International Bank in Raton, KRTN and The Medicine Shoppe.

Tickets are available at all branches of International Bank, the Shuler Theater, The Medicine Shoppe and from Kiwanis members.

Ticket prices range from “Super Savers,” which must be purchased in advance for $25 and will admit two adults and three children, to children and adult single tickets for $10. Single ticket advance sales are buy one, get one free. In addition, anyone 75 or older will receive a free ticket with the purchase of a child’s ticket.

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