2014 Convention



Saturday, August 18, 2012

Keeping tradition, some State Fair vendors set up a week early
August 18, 2012


Published on Aug 17, 2012 by iastatefair
Bob Newell posted in

Doug Moe: Fire-eating monk's sabbatical turns into a circus

Posted by Picasa

Brother Paul-Vincent Niebauer, in Mazomanie this summer on leave from a Minnesota monastery, is scheduled to eat fire and direct a play in Mazo this weekend.
This story has historic puppets on loan from England, a Benedictine monk on sabbatical from Minnesota and a new play set in Mazomanie about some famous brothers from Baraboo.

It has just about everything except someone cheating death by eating fire.

Strike that. Sunday afternoon, Brother Paul-Vincent Niebauer will eat fire.

"Don't inhale," Niebauer said, when asked how one goes about that particular feat.

Niebauer, 60, touches all parts of this story.

He's a Phillips native who has a degree in theater and secondary education from UW-Madison. He is also a monk who lives and works at St. John's Abbey in Collegeville, Minn.

Niebauer is in Mazomanie this summer on a six-month sabbatical from the monastery. If you think a sabbatical means half a year in a hammock, don't. Niebauer does try to take a long bike ride every morning to bond with the birds and the breeze, but he's had a busy few months.
He majored in theater at UW-Madison, but his heart was with the circus. (There had been a short, pre-Madison stint at St. John's when Niebauer considered the priesthood, but he wasn't ready, not then.) He worked at the Circus World Museum and befriended Tiny Krueger, the late Wisconsin legislator and circus fan.

In 1974, Niebauer joined the Franzen Bros. Circus out of Stevens Point. For the next 15 years, with Franzen and other circuses, he assumed most of the available roles, from ringmaster to clown, juggler to fire eater. The travel was brutal, the pay inconsequential. Still, he loved it, until his 40th birthday loomed, and with it a desire for something more.
Read more:
Steele County Fair Kicks Off
By: Gordon Severson

 Man Walks Ferris Wheel at County Fair
By: Gordon Severson

Crews prepping fairgrounds for Thursday opening

Geddes (WSYR-TV) -- It may be hard to believe, but the Great New York State Fair is nearly here and crews at the fairgrounds are starting to prepare for the tens of thousands of expected fairgoers. And with less than a week to go, there’s still plenty to do.
Pieces of the Fair are starting to come together, but things won’t get frenetic until Monday and Tuesday when the rides come in. Come next week, it’ll be full speed ahead for those working to bring it all together.
The Fair opens Thursday.
Montgomery County Agricultural Fair returns
Time-honored tradition lives on in the Internet Age, as visitors still flock to pigs, pies and, of course, monster trucks

Posted by Picasa
Tom Fedor/The Gazette
 The Montgomery County Agricultural Fair in Gaithersburg uses Facebook, direct mail and outdoor advertising to draw fairgoers.
by Lindsey Robbins Staff writer
Aug 17, 2012
Even in an age when most of the younger generation’s daily life seems devoted to checking social media, other online activities and video games, many families still are happy to spend a day at the fair.
Some fair organizers throughout the state say the slow economic recovery has only intensified interest in fairs, as families see them as less costly alternatives to vacations than resorts and theme parks.
But development pressures on fair property serve as constant reminders that despite their nostalgic tradition, fairs must find new ways to adapt to the 21st century.
“They’re a safe environment, a throwback to simpler times,” said Gail Yeiser, assistant to the dean for alumni and external relations for the University of Maryland’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Some fairs, most of which operate as nonprofits, generate millions in revenues. The Maryland State Fair in Timonium reported $5.7 million in 2010 revenues, according its latest available tax return. But the revenues often are practically offset by large expenses, such as $5.6 million in reported expenses for the state fair that year.
The state fair costs $8 for admission and runs from Aug. 24 through Sept. 3.
“You can’t even go to the movies for that price anymore,” said Andrew Cashman, assistant general manager for the state fair. “Most of the people we talk to say people aren’t traveling for vacations but will come to the fair for one day.”
Although a tropical storm and earthquake slammed the state fair last year, Cashman said it usually sees strong turnouts.
Anywhere from 7,000 to 12,000 exhibitors show at the state fair, displaying livestock and crafts, and giving demonstrations. Typically, an additional 75 to 100 vendors line the 100-acre fairgrounds, Cashman said.
read more:
Posted by Picasa
Kansas Stae Fair (2011)
SEPTEMBER 7 - 16, 2012

Fair a mixture of change and tradition
Examiner file photo
Alien inflatable dolls are among the many goofy souvenirs and prizes that can be found at the Whidbey Island Fair, scheduled for Thursday through Sunday.
By Elisabeth Murray,Staff Reporter
Whidbey Island, WA--The name and ownership of the annual fair held each August in Langley has changed, but visitors may not notice much of a difference.
Fair goers will still have four days to visit the animals: alpacas with bodies shorn of fur that make their unshaved heads seem a bit cartoonish; crowing roosters with red combs and wattles waggling; floppy-eared, spotted goats peering curiously over the edges of their pens.
Fair goers will still have four days to climb aboard spinning and twirling carnival rides, bite into fried food, tap their feet to music and just have fun.
In July, Island County commissioners disestablished the Island County Fair as a county government-owned and operated fair. In its place is the Whidbey Island Area Fair, a privately run, regional fair run by the Island County Fair Association.
The money to support the fair will come from gate admissions and vendor fees, plus charges for camping and other events held on the fairgrounds throughout the year.
According to Kelly Cammermeyer, “office diva” for the association, the goal was to expand the event to allow for more participation from people outside of the county.
The organization has run the fairs since 1912, first as a private stock company and later as a nonprofit. The fair association became a Washington state nonprofit in 1923, and in 2002 qualified for 501c(3) nonprofit status with the Internal Revenue Service.
“It’s fantastic,” Cammermeyer said, and then paused with a laugh. “It’s ‘Fairtastic.’”
“Fairtastic” is this year’s fair theme.
read more:

Friday, August 17, 2012


Published on Aug 16, 2012 by iastatefair
Posted by Picasa

3 Year Old Trapeze Artist - Muriel Performs at Moisture Festival

Uploaded by funnyfranksfamily on Apr 26, 2010
3 year old Muriel in her 3th public show ever, performing for the paying public at Moisture Festival - a variety arts festival, in Seattle WA. She chose the Swan Lake Music.

Historic circus ‘freak’ had Bernards roots
‘Zip the Pinhead,’ born in Bernards, rose to national fame

Posted by Picasa
August 17, 2012
BERNARDS TWP. – He was known to millions across the nation and his death 86 years ago made the front page of The New York Times, yet hardly anyone knows he was born in the township.
William Henry Johnson, an African-American born in Liberty Corner in 1857, gained fame and renown as a freak show attraction in P.T. Barnum’s traveling circus under the name, “Zip the Pinhead” or “Zip the What Is It?”
Johnson stood less than five feet tall and had an unusually small, conical head that captured the imagination of circus promoters.
For nearly 50 years, in an era of racial stereotyping, he was dressed up in a fur suit and billed as the survivor of a lost species.
But Johnson was far from a hapless spectacle. He developed an act in which he sang and danced and endeared himself to audiences.
The New York Times said only Tom Thumb and singer Jenny Lind rivaled Johnson as circus performers, “but some say that neither exceeded Zip in popularity.” It is said that more than 100 million people saw him.
Johnson left here as a child and later lived in Bound Brook. Although some circus histories have mentioned his place of birth as “Liberty Corners,” his local roots have been virtually forgotten.
Even The Bernardsville News, in a 1926 article on his death, said nothing of his origins.

Tonny Petersen Hell Drivers on Speed Channel

Published on Jun 21, 2012 by Justin Bellinger
Special on Tonny Petersen's Hell Drivers showed on Speed TV.
Children’s Day draws families to Herkimer Co.

Posted by Picasa
Stephanie Sorrell-White
Riders on a giant slide smiled after they got to the bottom during the Herkimer County Fair on Thursday. Pictured from left is Josh Castillo, Ana Paulino and Arianna Viggiano riding on the lap of Maki Castillo, all of Utica
By Stephanie Sorrell-White
GateHouse News Service
Posted Aug 16, 2012 @ 08:22 PM
Frankfort, N.Y. —
Families and friends flocked to the front gates of the Herkimer County Fair as they started to open on the last of two Children’s Days on Thursday.
 With prices for children ages 5 to 11 normally at $3, many took advantage of the opportunity of the Children’s Days which admitted children 11 years of age or younger for free. Other regular ticket prices are $7 for those older than age 11 and free for children younger than five years of age.
 Utica residents Ana Paulino, Maki Castillo, Josh Castillo and Arianna Viggiano were among those attending the fair on Thursday and went on some rides, including the big slides.
“The kids come out to see the animals and they get to have fun riding on the rides,” said Jim Viggiano, who was with the group.
 Adults, too, were having fun visiting the animals at the fair.
“I wanted to see the goats and the animal shows,” said Shelly Ford, of Ilion, who said she is currently raising three goats of her own.
 Ford was at the fair with her husband, Dennis, and her children, Shelden, 10, and Cherea, 7.
“We do this every year,” said Ford. “It’s good for the kids to come out and get some air, and to teach them about this.”
Jasper Schorer, of Herkimer, said he was at the fair “for the little ones.”
read more:

Beyond the Falls, Nik Wallenda and the Wallenda Family Experience
Posted by Marc Berman /
 on Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Circus fascinates children of all ages

Redford residents Collin and Drake Tansey go for an elephant ride Monday at the Kelly-Miller Circus.
Bill Bresler | staff photographer
Written by David Veselenak
Aug. 16, 2012 
Nine-year-old Kayla Cooper was excited to see the circus for the first time. So excited, she came with her sister and grandma to watch the big top get raised Monday at Bell Creek Park.
She and her sister, Alyssa, even got to ride on the back of an elephant.
“You wobble a lot,” the girl visiting from White Lake said. “It feels like you're going to fall off.”
The sisters were two of many children who attended the Kelly Miller Circus Monday at Five Mile and Inkster. The one-ring circus had two shows during the evening, featuring traditional circus performances such as clowns, acrobats and animals.
Posted by Picasa
Mysterious animals at the sideshow were another attraction at the circus earlier this week.
We had packed houses for both shows,” said Jay Johnson, an organizer for the circus with the Redford Jaycees. “We had pretty close to 1,300 people go through the doors.”
The Kelly Miller Circus, based in Oklahoma, has come to Redford for almost a decade, Johnson said. It's an opportunity for families to come and visit the circus and enjoy themselves before school starts in a few weeks.
“I like the jugglers, and I like the clowns and the acrobats,” said Bethany Lee, a 4-year-old Redford girl who came with her mom to watch the big top get raised.
Johnson said the show stays pretty similar each year, but has some changes. He said the four tigers the circus had this year was a different number than what they typically bring.
He said the circus officials have told him Redford is close to being able to host the circus for more than one day. Shows are determined by the number of tickets sold, and the Redford crowd is growing each year.
Johnson said the Jaycees typically estimate between 800 and 1,000 tickets will get sold each year, a number that sales shattered this year.
Several dozen families came Monday morning to watch the tent go up as well. An elephant in the circus was used to lift the tent poles into place, and workers were out hammering stakes into the ground to secure the big top.
Redford resident Deanna Lee has brought her family to the circus for several years. She keeps coming back because it's a great activity for her family.
She brought her children to watch the elephants raise the big top earlier in the day before returning for the show.
“It's very reasonably priced,” he said. “There are no bad seats.”
The circus tent and setup happens very quick, Johnson said. The circus arrived at 7 a.m. Monday, set up the tents and had everything put away by about 11 p.m. the same night.
“They're very efficient,” he said. “There was nothing in this field at 7 a.m.”

Joie Chitwood Thrill Show in 1956 - "Thrill Driver's Choice"

Uploaded by Ella73TV2 on Nov 13, 2011
Joie Chitwood Thrill Show was an exhibition of auto stunt driving that toured across North America thrilling audiences in large and small towns alike with their death-defying automobile stunts. In 1956 their stunt cars were made by Chevrolet, which lead to this short publicity film being produced.

Crowds jam big top for circus atmosphere

Christian Ciszewski, 5, favors a Batman theme when getting his face painted. He is from Howell and attended the circus with grandma, Connie Myler of Livonia.
Bill Bresler | staff photographer
Written by Brad Kadrich
Aug. 16, 2012 
As a child care worker for the Penrickton Center for the Blind in Taylor, Jessica Ball knows how important contributions from the Plymouth Lions Club are to the center's operation.
On Tuesday, she and some of her kids from the center got a chance to witness up-close where those contributions come from.
Ball was one of some 900 people who attended the first performance Tuesday of the Kelly Miller circus, sponsored for two shows by the Plymouth Lions Club. And she was glad to be there.
“It's very important for the kids to get out,” Ball said. “They get to experience different things they may not get to experience otherwise.”
Posted by Picasa
Colin and Keeghan Burns, 5 and 9 years old, enjoy their cotton candy. They are from Livonia.
Bill Bresler | staff photographer
What they witnessed was Kelly Miller's brand of circus, which featured elephants, horses, llamas, camels, clowns and international circus stars as Kelly Miller celebrates its 74th year.
The Plymouth stop is part of a 10,000-mile journey that will see the circus perform in some 200 cities through October.
The performances act as a fund-raiser for the Plymouth Lions, who use the proceeds they earn to fund their outreach programs, including their efforts in partnership with the Penrickton Center.
read more:
The Sorrow of the Circus in India

Published on Jun 27, 2012 by VideoVolunteers
Future of the Great Indian Circus looks Bleak
The tent is pitched. It is fenced in by colorful hand-painted hoardings featuring an artist's approximation of a world of exotic wonder and desire - Amazonian woman, ample bodied and jaguar-eyed , contorting around themselves suspended in the dark blue matter of space while fending off the advances of ferocious wild cats and leviathans from the deepest darkest jungles. Over 100,000 bulbs light up the grounds. A marching band plays its tune. A group of elephants make a little parade. A dwarf with face painted in the colors of a clown walks out the gate with a bullhorn in hand. He points it into the busy street outside, gathers his breath and yells out with all the noise he has inside of him. "The Circus is In Town."

Quick overview of the show TOTEM | Cirque du Soleil

Quick overview of the show TOTEM | Cirque du Soleil

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Card Manipulation- Eduardo Galeano -Le plus grand cabaret
du monde Magic

Uploaded by GaleanoMagic on Nov 16, 2011
Song by Vangelis & Vanessa Mae - "Roxanne's Veil"


Published on Aug 15, 2012 by iastatefair
Google at the Iowa State Fair - Old vs. New

Published on Aug 14, 2012 by iastatefair

C&M Circus returns to Farber

Posted by Picasa
Miss Simone on the trapeze during her last visit to Farber.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Thanks to the sponsorship of The Farber Evening Lions Club, Culpepper & Merriweather Circus, America’s Favorite Big Top Circus, is coming to Farber, Mo. on Tuesday, August 21 at Farber Ball Park with two scheduled performances at 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Now in its 28th edition, C&M Circus has become internationally known for quality family entertainment. This authentic One-Ring, Big Top Circus has been featured on National Geographic’s Explorer TV series, Entertainment Tonight, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, Arizona Highways Magazine. It has also been featured on the A&E Special: Under the Big Top and most recently, On the Road with Circus Kids, a Nickelodeon special featured on the Nick News Program.
 Area residents are encourage to visit Farber on circus morning to watch the town be transformed into a bustling Circus City. Activity swirls around the grounds as animals are unloaded, the Big Top is erected, and rigging is prepared for performances later in the day.
 Between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. will be the raising of the Big Top, then stay for the free Tour. This presentation offers a unique face-to-face opportunity for families, schools, and interested community members to meet and learn all about the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus family and includes a walking tour of the circus grounds.
 Those attending can learn interesting facts about the performers, the history of the show and the different species of animals in the Circus Family. In this presentation Circus officials will also address topics such as hygiene, grooming and the veterinary care all of our animals receive.
 In recent years the Tent Raising and Morning Tour has become a popular program for families and interested community members. It is presented in a way everyone, young and old can learn many interesting facts about the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus Family and now the Circus has a brand new tent.
 On circus day, the performers bring the magic of the circus to life in each 90-minute performance. This year’s lineup includes an All-Star group of performers and entertainers that include Miss Simone and her amazing single trapeze, Miss Lana’s Feathered Friends, Miss Paulina on the Web, The Arlise Troupe on their wild and crazy unicycles, Angel Perez with juggling, The Silverlake’s sizzeling whips, Karina and her hoola hoops, The Perez Russian Swing and lets not forget the performing Jungle Cats, presented by Mr. Trey Key. The event is accompanied by original music, written by the talented, Matt Margucci from Los Angeles, Calif.

Circus to serve as fundraiser in Baldwin City
By Elvyn Jones
August 15, 2012
To the Baldwin City Recreation Commission and Chamber of Commerce officials, a circus and school organization seemed like a natural partnership.
At the suggestions of the two organizations, the Baldwin Community Service Organization will have as a back-to-school fundraiser a visit from the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus, said Michelle Patterson, CSO president.
“I’ve heard they wanted to get the circus here for some time but no one seemed interested,” she said. “It’s nice to get it in here.”
The big-top, one-ring circus will have shows at 5 and 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 30, at the ball field complex on Bull Pup Drive south of the Baldwin Elementary School Intermediate Center.
“My kids and I saw the circus in Ottawa,” Patterson said. “We loved it. It has some animals, clowns, acrobats, face painting — it’s a real kid-friendly kind of thing.”
Children and circus-loving adults can get an advanced taste of the circus next Wednesday when Skeeter the Clown visits Baldwin City. She will start her day in the community at 8 a.m. at Baldwin City Market, move at 9 a.m. to Vintage Park and spend 10 to 11 a.m. at the Baldwin City Library for its Storytime event.
read more at:

Valleyfair reopened after power outage
Written by--KARE 11 TV
Aug 14, 2012
Shakopee, Minn

Ringling Bros. Presents Fully Charged - Meet the Ringmaster, Brian Crawford Scott

Published on Aug 13, 2012 by ringlingbros
Posted by Picasa
The World's Largest Circus Under the Big Top
October 3-4, 2012
Come to the MS Coast Coliseum and experience The World's Largest Circus Under the Big Top... The Cole Bros. Circus of the Stars!
 October 3&4, 2013.

Fair Flashback: August 1986: NewsChannel 9 at the Fair
Take a look back at NewsChannel 9's live coverage of the New York State Fair from 25 years ago.

Circus stopping in county for 2 shows
(with photo gallery)

Tigers and zebras and clowns, oh my! Exotic animals stampeded into Pinckney Wednesday morning with the opening of the Kelly-Miller Circus. The event is set up on the fields near St. Mary's Catholic Church on Dexter-Pinckney Road. Photo by ALAN WARD / DAILY PRESS & ARGUS
Written by Amanda Whitesell, DAILY PRESS & ARGUSfrom:
Aug. 14, 2012 
Elephants, tigers and camels. Oh, my.
Family members — young and old — will be enchanted under the old-fashioned big top this week as the Kelly Miller Circus rolls into Livingston County to perform at two sites.
The Oklahoma-based company will present shows at 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. Wednesday at St. Mary Catholic Church, 10601 Dexter-Pinckney Road, south of M-36 in Putnam Township, and at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Saturday at Fowlerville High School, 700 N. Grand Ave. in Fowlerville.

Rebecca Ostroff giving a set-up tour.
"It's a good, wholesome family activity that our community definitely needs," said Rebecca Keiser, director of religious education and youth ministry at St. Mary Catholic Church, the sponsor of Wednesday's performances.
The Kelly Miller Circus has been on the road since 1938 and will perform shows in 217 locations this year, according to General Manager Jim Royal.
This year will mark the Fowlerville Rotary's second time sponsoring the circus, but it won't be held at the Fowlerville Fairgrounds in Handy Township, as it last was in 2010.

Easyriders Rodeo, which brings thousands of motorcyclists to the Fowlerville area each year, will be hosted at the venue this weekend, which wouldn't make for a "family-friendly" circus, said Steve MacDermaid, past president of the Fowlerville Rotary.
Sponsor organizations receive a percentage of each ticket sold, with presale tickets allotting sponsors a higher percentage, Royal said.
Jessica Sweeny, left, and Chloe Crockett, age 11, purchase tickets for the Kelly-Miller Circus Wednesday morning in Pinckney.
Posted by Picasa
   SPectators cover their ears against the clanging ring of a post driving hammer used by Kelly-Miller Circus staff to drive tent poles around the cricumference of the big top tent Wednesday morning.

read more:

Published on Aug 14, 2012 by AtlanticCityWeekly
Nik Wallenda & The Wallenda Family Experience: Beyond the Falls...August 13-21, Tropicana, Atlantic City Weekly. Video Edited by C. Steiner; Video Produced by Lew Steiner, Publisher, Atlantic City Weekly &

Activists target fundraising circus hosted by Shriners

An elephant handler of the Tarzan Zerbini Circus washes elephants Maria and Shelly, checks their feet and readies them for their afternoon performance at the Brockville and District Shrine event at the Brockville Memorial Civic Centre on Wednesday, Aug. 8. This annual fundraiser assists the local Shrine Club to raise money to assist families with their medical expenses.
By Doreen Barnes
Posted Aug 16, 2012
EMC News - The fundraising Shrine circus came to town last week. So too did the protesters.
Six adults and one child, some from the Ottawa Animal Defense League, stood on Magedoma/Millwood corner, Brockville, on Wednesday, Aug. 8 with placards denouncing the treatment of animals in circus acts, especially elephants.
According to demonstrator Michele Thorn, the Ottawa Animal Defense League is a loose network of 400 people on Facebook and 400 more on an email list.
"We are here to educate people as to what goes on in circuses with animals in the act," said Thorn. "There are a lot of things on the internet and I know it has its issues sometimes, but you can find undercover videos on line now as to what's happening in the training situations."
When asked if Thorn has spoken with any trainers in the past, she indicated she had and they said the animals are treated well.
"We respect the animals and use the bullhook as a guide," stated Thorn, "that's what they say all the time now. They (animals) are treated well and we have a stellar record. It's legal to use those (bullhooks), so they cannot be charged or cited."
The use of a bullhook is not banned in Ontario.

A small group of circus activists took to the entrance of Magedoma Boulevard on Wednesday, August 8 with placards to denounce the treatment of circus animals, in particular elephants
Activists have followed the Shrine -Tarzan Zerbini performances in Ontario and there were protesters at the Toronto appearance, Kingston as well as Brockville, Wednesday, Aug. 8.

"I will be in Ottawa and Cornwall (demonstrating)," added Thorn. "We are not an organization that can mobilize like People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, (PETA). They do not have a PETA office in Canada. We are all volunteers and limited in resources. I bought a shower curtain, cardboard and duct tape."
The Tarzan Zerbini circus was brought to the Brockville Memorial Civic Centre by the Brockville and District Shrine Club as a fundraiser.
All the proceeds from this event go towards helping children obtain needed medical treatment.
Posted by Picasa
Elephants Maria and Shelly relax outdoors before their afternoon performance at the Brockville and District Shrine event at the Brockville Memorial Civic Centre last Wednesday, Aug. 8..
read more at:

The Hardy Family, risley acrobats

Published on Jul 19, 2012 by dasBootC1
The Hardy Family (Australia), risley acrobats (icarian games)
The Hollywood Palace, host Fred Astaire, air December 3, 1966

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Posted by Picasa