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!

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Friday, October 21, 2011

BILL PRICKETT VISITS


CULPEPPER & MERRIWEATHER CIRCUS


I was able to see Culpepper & Merriweather circus two times in Aug of this year. The show, and the new tent, have been reviewed and commented on several times, so I want to concentrate on the "original members of this circus".


The show started in 1985 by "Red" Robert Johnson, B.J. Hebert, and Curtis Cainan. They had been together on Big John Strong's circus, whereBJ clowned and sometimes sold coloring books. The show played under a tent, which "Red" got from Byron Buford, and they started playing KOA style campgrounds in Florida.


Lynn Jacobs joined a month after opening, first as cook, and did a sideshow bit. The show eventually got a web from Mel Ray Silverlake. Lynn stated doing web and then single trapeze. Lynn was on Carson & Barnes, and Circus Kirk prior to joining C&M. Tavana Luvas replaced Lynn in 1986, doing traps, footloop, and had the concession stand.




BJ Hebert, Concession manager , has been in the business for 31 years, 27 of these on C&M





.#2, David "Stilts" Volponi, has been on C&M for 24 seasons.



The Dykes Family joined the show, I believe, in 2003. Ron, Unicyle and inside concessions/novelties,



#3 Ron and Noah Dykes



Robin,Cook and tickets, Simone (21), Single trapeze and Ringmistress, first half of show, Paulina (15) ,Spanish Web, and with Ron
breaking a Big and Little horse act for next season, Lana (11), bird act, and Noah (8) in family Unicycle act. Daughter April (19) is in
college studing art. Sister-in-law, Natalie Cainan, present her dog act and is Ringmistress for the secon half of the show.
Ron and Robin have worked on Roberts Bros, Allen Bros, Royal American and Culpepper & Merriweather, and perhaps other shows, that I can not remember at the moment.






#4... Simone Dykes





#5...Paulina Dykes





#6 & 7 Lana Dykes







#8 Simone Dykes and Natalie Cainan (her Aunt)





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#9 Paulina, horse Wyatt, and Ron Dykes Photos by Bill Prickett


Other acts in the show include: Karina Perez (Hula Hoops), Angel Perez (Juggling), Perez family doing Russian swing, and clowns Aaron Rider (Melvino) and Dj Weiss. Dad, Ron, and daughter Paulina are working on a Big & Little act for next season.


(EDITOR'S COMMENT)

The Dykes Family(not related to Dick) were featured on

Billy Martin's Cole Circus for a number of years also.

In fact yours truly can remember watching Simone when she

was still in a play pen!

My how time flies!

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