Thursday, August 16, 2012

Faded Glory


Many circuses had their own trains.

The elephant barn is now a museum.

There remain two elephants on the grounds.

The boys check out the ride.

The circus parade.

We drove five or six miles from the park to the site of the Circus Museum.  I am not now nor have I ever been a big fan of the circus.  But I was happy to go along with the youngsters for the ride.  Clearly much effort went into the collecting of artifacts and building the displays in this museum, but it is also clear that the popularity of the attraction has waned and little attention seems to be given to the facility.  We found three people and two elephants on the grounds.  There was an elderly gentleman in the office who was more than willing to take our admission fee.  He told us to drive on down, look around, stay away from the animals, and ask him anything when we finished our tour.  We followed the first three directions and skipped the fourth.  There were two men working around old junk, perhaps engaged in attempting to restore a wagon.  The interior of the facility was all ours.

In addition to posters, costumes, chariots and so much more, a large section was a circus model builders paradise.  A complete circus with parade, trains, bigtop and performers was underway in HO scale.  It was the most interesting feature of the place.

9 comments:

Jacquelineand.... said...

It's certainly seen better days but it was good of you to share a peek with us.

Shelly said...

My grandfather loved to take us to circuses when I was young. I haven't been to one in ages, but I suspect it would be a bit underwhelming to see one now as an adult. The museum, though, sounds like a very interesting trip~

Lin said...

It sounds sorta sad. I hope the elephants are well cared for.

vanilla said...

Jacquelineand, neglected, almost shabby as it was, it is an interesting tour.

Shelly, I grew up listening to preachers who said such things as "Who goes to the circus? I'll tell you who goes to the circus. Sir Cuss, and Mrs. Cuss and all the little Cusses." I saw an amateur circus two years ago which was really rather stunning.f

Lin, I suspect the elephants are the really old fellas waiting to die. But it did appear that they are cared for.

Grace said...

I love the circus - when I was a kid and as a grown-up. One year my father managed to snag tickets for seats that were right on the floor of Madison Square Garden - you couldn't get much more up close and personal as that. The last time I was at the circus was 10 years ago - I bought a fabulous clown mask that I wore all night long...

Secondary Roads said...

I never did care much for the circus or the carnival. It always seemed to be a cheap, but glitzy veneer on something that was unwholesome.

vanilla said...

Grace, you did have a special experience!

Chuck, different folks, different perspectives. My thoughts generally paralleled yours. The circus entertainment can be amazing, but most folk don't think of the lifestyle that the performers live.

Rebecca said...

I never liked the circus either, even less so after learning about the Colosseum. But I used to have a tiny Fisher-Price train set that looked remarkably like the trains in your photos!

vanilla said...

Rebecca, for me, though clowns are such a major part of the circus, they are also the part I can least tolerate. I simply don't like clowns.