Fun Facts About Our Circus!
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Phrases that came from the Circus!
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- The Gold Edition will play 51 different North American cities in a year.
- The Gold Edition contains 20 acts, including the Kai LeClerc Upside Down Act, Flying Neves trapeze, K9s in Flight and Los Scolas high wire.
- The aerial rigging dimensions of the flying area between catcher and pedestal is 50 feet.
- The entrance portal is 15’w x 12’h x 12’deep.
- 14,000 feet of cable is used to power the Gold Edition.
- It takes eight hours to assemble the new stage and rigging.
- It takes four hours to tear down the stage and rigging.
- 270 tons of equipment is moved from city to city.

- 200 pounds of popcorn are consumed in each city Ringling Bros. visits.
- At each performance, 500 pounds of ice is produced to make snow cones.
- 500 pounds of sugar is used to spin cotton candy in each city.
- There are 52 different Ringling Bros.-branded toys and products for consumers to choose from at each show.
Travel Fun Facts:
- 11 semi-trucks and 47 RV’s travel with the Gold Edition.
- Each year, an average of 298 hours is spent traveling by truck and RV from city to city.
- The Gold Unit will travel an average of 32,688 miles during the two-year tour.
- The average jump between cities is 350 miles.
- 270 tons of equipment is moved from city to city (includes RV’s and trucks).
- The Gold Edition will perform in 51 cities in 48 weeks.

Animal Fun Facts:

- 16 animals travel and perform with the Gold Unit: 2 Asian Elephants, 8 horses and 6 dogs.
- Performing elephant Angelica (8) was born at the Ringling Bros. Center for Elephant Conservation.
- An average of 100 pounds of food is eaten by each Asian elephant per day.
- Angelica gains about a pound a day. By the end of the year, that will amount to almost a quarter of a ton in weight gain!
- Angelica responds to over 60 commands!
- The average weight of Sylvia Zerbini’s horses is 900 pounds.
- Sylvia Zerbini’s horses eat an average of 10 bails of hay, 6 bails of alfalfa, 100 pound bags of senior feed, 25 pounds of sweet feed and 75 pounds of carrots a day.
- Gail Mirabella’s dog Dallas can reach heights of 8 to 10 feet while jumping for a frisbee.

Performer/Act Fun Facts:

- 34 performers, 6 musicians, 16 management/staff and 32 crew travel with the Gold Edition of The Greatest Show On Earth®.
- The Gold Edition contains circus acts from 10 different nations, which include the United States, Guyana, Venezuela, Chile, Brazil, Mexico, Bulgaria, Romania, Poland and Hungary.
- 9 languages, including English, Spanish, Portuguese, Bulgarian, Romanian, German, French, Hungarian, Russian, are spoken on the Gold Edition.
- 20 children are traveling with the Gold Edition with 14 enrolled in the Ringling Bros. school.
- 18 families currently travel with the Gold Edition.
- Liliana Escobar has been performing since she was 15 years old, when she discovered she could sing.
- Jon and Laura Weiss put over 26,000 miles on their RV last Gold Unit tour.
- Clown Eccentric Tom Dougherty studied Latin for eight years and Ancient Greek for 2 years.
- Sylvia Zerbini does not use weights to build her lean muscles; instead she uses her own body weight to grow stronger.
- Vicki Zsilak and Alex Petrov are upside down for 4.5 minutes during their routine. The longest they have hung upside down was about 12 minutes.
- Los Scolas work on a high-wire that is 5/8” wide, the average size of a thumb!
- Ikar Troupe members reach heights of 25 feet when launched from the teeterboard.
- The Sankar Duo twist and turn their bodies in a variety of unbelievable positions, however neither Sebastian, Sr. nor Sebastian, Jr. are double jointed.
- The Flying Neves are 40 feet above the ground when performing a trick and are soaring 20 feet from the trapeze to the catcher.
- Christine Zerbini is able to twirl 50 hula hoops at one time
- Mitch Freddes graduated Ringling Bros. Clown College over 30 years ago. He was one of 50 people accepted out of 10,000 applicants.
- Vet tech, Anita Santiago, was part of a 500-person veterinary corp in the Army and was stationed in the Middle East caring for camels, sheep and dogs.

Phrases that came from the Circus.
Since its introduction to America in l793, the Circus has a relationship to the American way of life that is not merely a form of entertainment. The Circus' influence on culture has been far-reaching, as these examples of contributions to the English language suggest.

"Hold your horses!" is a phrase born of the Circus.
This cry was heard up and down Main Streets all across America in the late 1800s and early 1900s, on the day the Circus came to town. As the magnificent Circus street parade progressed, a man would precede the elephants, calling "Hold your horses!" because the unusual smell of the ponderous pachyderms would often frighten the animals. At that time, horses were the commonplace mode of transportation.

"Tossing his hat into the ring" - On May 8, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson attended a performance of The Greatest Show On Earth® in Washington, D.C. When the band played "Hail to the Chief," he stood up, doffed his hat and sailed it into the center ring. The reporters present interpreted this "tossing his hat into the ring" as an indication that he would run for re-election, which indeed he did.

"Jumbo" - Barnum & Bailey's huge African elephant, Jumbo, was advertised far and wide in 1882 as the "largest and heaviest elephant ever seen by mortal man, either wild or in captivity." The word "jumbo" came into common usage to mean anything huge or oversized and can now be found in the dictionary as an adjective.

"Rain or shine" - This phrase began as part of the advertising pitch used in the 1820s when Circus tents were first utilized. Prior to that time in America, traveling Circuses often played out of doors with perhaps only a side wall to keep the non-paying public from seeing the show. When it rained, the performance would have to be canceled. But under the Big Top, a Circus could perform "rain or shine." (The earliest Circuses had been temporary wooden structures, believed to have canvas tops.)

"Get the show on the road" - The impatient Circus boss would use these words to mean "let's get going." He was referring to the necessity of moving the show from one town to the next in order to keep up with the tight schedule of bookings.

"Grandstanding" - When Circuses came to town, representatives from newspapers were always on hand to cover the opening. It was quite commonplace for politicians and other influential people to be in the Circus stands shaking hands and generally making themselves noticeable. The dictionary currently defines "grandstanding" as "to play or act so as to impress onlookers."





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