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Bye Bye circus: Ringling Bros. shuts the curtain on the Pacific Northwest

IMAGE: The sun sets over a Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus truck outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. Ringling Bros. announced it would not be returning to the Pacific Northwest for at least a couple of years. (photo Karen Ducey photography).
October 5, 2015
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Everett– If you missed the circus this weekend it may be years before you get to see it again.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced last week it will not to return to the Pacific Northwest for at least a couple years according to a company spokesman.

This was welcome news to animal advocates who shouted their message outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett for the last time on Sun. Oct 4.

IMAGE: Demonstrators protest the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

Demonstrators protest the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

Around 35 protesters rallied under the watchful eyes of police and arena officials accusing the live entertainment company of animal abuse while hundreds of families and couples flooded the gates to gain entrance to the show. The gold unit, which travels by truck and is the smaller of Ringling’s three tour groups, features trapeze artists, dancers, acrobats, and clowns. It also has animal performances including dogs that walk on two legs, jump ropes, ride scooters and jump through hoops. Horses carry jumping acrobats on their backs and two elephants sit on stools and twirl hoops.

Iamge: An elephant from the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

An elephant from the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

Sadie Woolman-Morgan, from Snohomish, Wash. who was there with her mother, Jackie, said they came to “speak up for creatures who don’t have a voice.” “It’s absolutely wrong,” said Sadie, “They beat their animals and chain them up.” Her mother Jackie added, “We don’t support things that keep animals in captivity like this.”

Steve Payne, a spokesman for Feld Entertainment, the parent company who owns the circus, says, “We do want to come back to the Pacific Northwest but right now we don’t have anything scheduled.” Requests by Animal News Northwest to photograph the animals or the circus were denied.

Ringling Bros. who brought the “Built to Amaze” tour to the Seattle area in Kent the previous weekend will head to Spokane next weekend, Oct.9-11. The tour officially ends in Iowa on Oct. 25.

Payne encourages circus fans not to lose hope. “We will be back!” he said.

Last March Ringling Bros. announced it would phase out elephants from its shows. According to an article in the Christian Science Monitor Feld owns 43 elephants, and 29 of the giant animals live at the company’s 200-acre Center for Elephant Conservation in central Florida. Thirteen animals will continue to tour with the circus before retiring to the center by 2018. One elephant is on a breeding loan to the Fort Worth Zoo.”

Rachel Bjork from the Northwest Animal Rights Network is “ecstatic” the circus won’t be coming back. “The circus is no life for animals.” she says. Bjork has been protesting the circus for ten years and says she will now have time to do other things.

Image: Animal advocates protest the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

Animal advocates protest the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

Iamge: Animal advocates protest the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

Animal advocates protest the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus outside the Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wash. on October 4, 2015. (photo Karen Ducey photography).

 

 

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12 Responses to Bye Bye circus: Ringling Bros. shuts the curtain on the Pacific Northwest

  1. Amy Gedgaudas October 10, 2015 at 2:31 pm #

    You should edit the caption under the top photo. It says they will be returning instead of will NOT be returning.

  2. Freddie Williams October 8, 2015 at 1:03 pm #

    Feld is going to breed elephants in captivity for profit!

  3. Matt Stuart October 7, 2015 at 1:21 pm #

    Well done…Keep up the fight, EVERYWHERE!

  4. Irish Cornaire October 7, 2015 at 1:13 pm #

    The people walking by going to the circus are sheeples and uninformed and rather pay to watch cruelty in person,idiots.

  5. Laurie Meyers October 7, 2015 at 6:11 am #

    They should stop using animals all together in their shows. They can have circus acts without using animals if they really wanted to. Free the animals Ringling Bros!!

  6. Linda Boyce October 7, 2015 at 4:07 am #

    good news.Agree nosey needs to be recued suffered for so long now needs peace retirement

  7. Barbara Whitaker October 6, 2015 at 4:04 pm #

    Yes!! Why are they not canceling in Spokane Oct 9th and 10th, it is in the Northwest? Hopefully they will not return with animal performances. Asking everybody to help Nosey/Tiny the circus elephant owned by Hugo Liebel out of Florida. Hugo has over 200 violations of Federal Animal Welfare Act. USDA will not confiscate this 30 plus year old arthritic elephant stolen from her mother as a baby knowing of the violations. The Tennessee sanctuary is ready to take her. Go to “Action For Nosey Now”. Facebook and join the fight for her freedom and end the abuse.

  8. VSResident October 6, 2015 at 3:20 pm #

    FYI: Ringling is not really retiring the elephants. Feld Entertainment plans to continue to exploit these animals by creating some kind of “elephant reserve” attraction and by continuing to breed them for profit. So there is nothing noble about this move- it is simply a PR move- and there are still many other species of animals suffering in the circus. Listen, it’s hard to imagine that something that looks so cool on the outside can be so miserable and heartbreaking on the inside, but it is. You don’t have to be an animal rights activist to know that these animals are not born performing- they are trained using brutal methods and they are ultimately deprived of any kind of natural life. Info about Feld Entertainment’s future plans for the elephants: http://www.care2.com/causes/stop-ringling-bros-from-breeding-elephants-for-captivity.html

  9. pdxn00b October 6, 2015 at 2:46 pm #

    Woohoo! Thanks for the good news. Now on to the next circus that chooses to fill this gap left by Ringling — till all of them stop abusing animals!

  10. Barbara Lovett October 6, 2015 at 1:33 pm #

    I was so glad to hear this news a couple weeks ago! I hope the elephants can be treated more humanely, and I suggest that Ringling stop the breeding of elephants now. Elephants deserve better.

  11. Chris Dietrich October 6, 2015 at 1:12 pm #

    Great news!!!! Those animals are not living a natural life being trucked all over the country to do stupid tricks.