The Shrine Circus | The Life of K: The Shrine Circus

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Shrine Circus

Saturday we went to the circus and it was amazing!

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The big top.
It all started back in June when I participated in a Twitter party about the Shrine Circus. I'm not even kidding. Twitter parties are basically a time set aside for people to chat about a certain topic. You use a hashtag (#) to follow along because tweets from people you don't follow don't show up in your stream otherwise.

It was interesting reading everything about the circus and the animals and then I won tickets. It was surprising and awesome. I was able to pick the city, date and time so I chose Saturday at 4pm in Ottawa.

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Me and my little man before the circus.
Of course Little K didn't nap so she fell asleep in the car on the way there. We decided that J would drop off me and Little J and he'd go park the car a bit farther away (to make for an easier getaway). Me and my buddy made our way over to the big top and picked up our VIP tickets.

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The fancy VIP tickets I won.
J made his way from the car with Little K while Little J and I people-watched outside. Little J was quiet and shy but I could tell he was excited. We made our way inside, past the concession stand area and found some seats. We were off to one side but only a few rows back. By now, both kids were more scared than excited.

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Looking more scared than excited.
Two elephants were in the ring when we sat down, but soon enough the show started with the ringmaster and some clowns. Again, the kids weren't too happy about the clowns or the noise. Little J sat with his Dad and Little K was in my lap.

The elephants left and the tigers were brought in. These cats are incredible: so big and obviously powerful, but so cat-like and lovable. There was one though, one very angry kitty. J was sure we were about to see something awful, but angry-cat just growled and drooled the entire time and swatted at the handlers every now and then. You can see him in the right of the next picture, growling away.

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The ring of fire!
The tigers left and the chain link fence was taken down. And then two men and two women did some amazing acrobatics. The most impressive was when the guys were both hanging from their knees with a rope around their necks. The rope was also around the girls' necks while they hung and twirled. I still can't wrap my head around it.

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There was a unicycling family (too fast to capture with my phone camera) and horses (a big one and a little one, and 6 arabian horses all together, also too fast for non-blurry shots), and then more acrobatics. This woman, the Golden Girl as Little J calls her, was incredibly strong. She climbed a rope using only her hands and then proceeded to do her whole act, a lot of which was her hanging from a bar or rope high in the air. This was Little J's favourite part of the whole circus.

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Little J's Golden Girl.
Somewhere in there was also a juggling family, but the dad juggled the kids using his feet. He lay on his back and they jumped onto his feet and then he flipped them. It was really neat.

After about an hour it was time for intermission. The elephants came back out for rides and the circus performers were put to work doing face painting and selling of various things (light up toys and balloons and other souvenirs).

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Two elephants went out to play...
We decided it was a good time to go. I'm sad we didn't see the whole thing, but it made sense... it was getting close to dinner and Little K had been asking the entire time if it was time to go yet. We didn't have to fight the crowds or deal with over-hungry kids and we still had a great time.

It took Little J a while to settle in, but he was clapping and enjoying himself. Little K only started clapping right near the end. Her favourite part was a tie between the tigers and the horses. I love seeing the strength of the human performers, though big cats are so neat to watch.

I'm so glad we were able to go so a big thank you to the Shrine Circus for coming to town and for giving away tickets at the Twitter party. I hope next time the kids are a bit less scared and a bit more excited and maybe we'll get to stay for the whole thing.

Did you go to the circus? Or Cirque du Soleil when it was in town? I'm sad we missed that one.

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