It is with JOY that we report that the owners of Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus, will close the 146-year-old show in May. Chairman and CEO of Feld Entertainment cited declining attendance and high operating costs as the reasons for closing.
But we don’t care WHAT the reason is. We are just so happy to know that the once captive and abused animals will now go free. (It’s a shame Ringling Bros couldn’t be innovative and state “the show must go on,” just without the animals!)
From the article:
“The Feld family has owned the circus for 49 years, and employs some 500 people for the show. Those employees were told about the closure on Saturday night, after shows in Orlando and Miami. A handful will be placed in positions with the company’s other shows _ it owns Monster Jam, Disney on Ice and Marvel Live, among other things but most will be out of a job.”
In cases where an employee lives on the tour rail, the company will also help with housing relocation.
Ringling retired all of their elephants to a property in central Florida (just miles from where I live on the Central Florida coast), in May of 2016. Forty elephants live at the Center for Elephant Conservation in Polk County, however, the circus still has lions, tigers, camels, donkeys, alpacas, kangaroos and llamas. A home for the other animals will be found but the company says they will continue to operate the Center for Elephant Conservation.