Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey waved its heartwarming final farewell in mid 2017 due to weakening attendance and high operating costs. This American treasure named "The Greatest Show on Earth" is now no more after entertaining crowds for a hundred and forty-seven years.
Long queues waiting to enter and pack the arena.
We were lucky for the opportunity to be in the audience for one of their performances if only for about fifteen minutes. It was a sold out enthusiastic crowd and the amazing applause and excitement did justice to the performers' skills and wonderful costumes.
The loud enthusiasm was our undoing. The kiddo is extremely sensitive and he couldn't bear harsh noises; covering his ears with his hands. He was whimpering and begging to leave. So, we made the ultimate sacrifice and left. Paid two hundred dollars for the four tickets and counted ourselves lucky we didn't get ringside seats.
Brisk business for vendors near the door as their enticed young clients begged parents for candy and overpriced thingamajigs.
I am not surprised of its demise as operating costs must be extremely high to support a huge team of performers and crew and high maintenance of the animals. Mindsets have changed and the circus like others in the same industry faced much criticism from animal rights activists.
Activists against animal abuse quietly demonstrating some distance away from the arena.