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Thursday, April 5, 2012

At 95, oldest clown keeps the smiles coming

 
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In this March 29, 2012, photo, Floyd "Creeky" Creekmore puts on his makeup before a visit with children at a circus in Billings, Mont. Guinness World Records has anointed the world's oldest performing clown, and it's none other than Creekmore, a former Montana rancher who's been donning the big nose and bright makeup for almost eight decades. (AP Photo/MatthewBrown) (Matthew Brown)
from: cbsnews.com
April 5, 2012
BILLINGS, Mont. — Floyd "Creeky" Creekmore is one of the quieter acts in the circus, his larger-than-life clown shoes shuffling methodically as he works the crowd, igniting surprised giggles and slack-jawed wonder from children that look up to encounter Creekmore's wrinkled eyes smiling through thick makeup.
At 95 years old, the former Montana rancher recently dubbed the oldest performing clown in the world has fewer magic tricks up his oversized sleeves than he once did. He gave up juggling several years ago after a stroke, and has long since parked the home-made bicycle he once incorporated into his acts.
But when the Shrine Circus comes through Billings, where Creekmore lives with his 96-year-old wife, Betty, Creeky the Clown returns to life.
At home in his kitchen, while Betty dozes in the living room, Creekmore pulls on a multi-colored, striped jacket and dons a bright orange wig topped by a yellow hat. He glues on a rubber nose, carefully ties his shoes.
When his shaky right hand sends a line of make-up askew on one side of his face, Creekmore just makes the other side a little crooked, too.
"I'll stay back from the crowd so they don't notice," he says.

Others have laid claim to the title of world's oldest clown, including an 81-year-old member of the Moscow Circus, Oleg "The Sun Clown" Popov and Andy "Bumbo" Beyer of Santa Ana, Calif., who was widely publicized as the oldest until his retirement three years ago at the age of 91.
But turns it out that Creekmore had a 20-month advantage all along, clowning away in his low-key style in eastern Montana. He now carries the imprimatur of Guinness World Records, which declared him world's oldest performing clown in February after friends applied on his behalf.
Fellow performers and family members says Creekmore has started to slow down, yet gives no sign of ending his periodic performances.
"Even if his body is telling him no, his mind won't stop," said grandson Tom McCraw.
read more: http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-502927_162-57409704/at-95-oldest-clown-keeps-the-smiles-coming/

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