For some odd reason, Hugo, Oklahoma has been and still is the winter HQ for several difference circuses.
I can count on one hand the number of times I remember going to the circus as a kid so I'm not taking my girls to relive and revive a plethora of cherished childhood memories. Nope, I'm taking them for the same reason I like old diners and small town museums, revival movie houses, American Graffiti cruise nights, drive-in theaters, soda fountains in pharmacies, and picnics at the park -- nostalgia.
Even nostalgia that I wasn't around to experience.
Heck, I was alive when the Beatles broke up and Elvis died, yet didn't appreciate them until many years after their heyday. Had I been more aware, I would have done all that I could to see either of them perform live.
Which brings my family and I back to the circus every time we get word one is setting up in a nearby town. The girls seem to have dug it and for a few bucks more, they got a light-up, spinny, noise-making souvie, some finely blown cotton candy, a coloring book, elephant ride, and the cutest picture of the both of them holding a monster python.
Someday, due to lack of interest by audiences, too much interest by PETA, skyrocketing costs of equipment maintenance, transportation fees, labor costs, and diminishing returns at the ticket office, the circus as we know it will have gone the way of disco roller rinks, the cassette tape, shag carpeting, and the Camaro (yes, I know the Camaro will return in 2008/09 - wish that were the case for roller boogie, boy do I miss those days).
Do yourself a favor. Save up a few bucks and take yourself and a kid to the circus. Someday, like Elvis, "The circus will have left the building" and will exist only in cyberspace and in the long term memory of those, like me, who took the time to enjoy this dinosaur of live entertainment.
Besides, the more tyksters that have clown phobia therapy, the better off we'll all be in the long run.