The circus came to town Saturday, much to the delight of many

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[October 08, 2012]     Send a link to a friend

The Kelly Miller Circus came to town on Saturday. Shows were at 2 and 5 p.m., but before the shows were even ready to begin, people arrived early in the morning to watch the workers prepare the grounds for the day's events.

At 9 a.m., circus employees began to bring out equipment and heavy-duty stakes in order to erect the main tent, or "the big top." The tent, which contained the one-ring show, had a seating capacity of 1,500 people. The tent was 120 by 130 feet and 40 feet high, and it had to be supported by more than a quarter of a mile of heavy-gauge aluminum tubing as well as several miles of rope, steel cable and chain.

In a span of just under an hour, the tent was up, ready for the show. Typically, the center pole is raised by three Asian elephants that are part of the entourage. However, at less than 40 degrees outside, the weather was too cold for the elephants.

While the elephants remained inside their trailers, other animals were still brought outside. Zebras, llamas and goats were available for viewing, and for $5, children could ride a camel.

The land the circus was erected on belongs to the Best Western Plus on Lincoln Parkway and historic Route 66. Photos will be made available on the hotel's Facebook page.

The Kelly Miller Circus has been in operation since 1938. They are based in Hugo, Okla.

[Derek Hurley]

Photos by Nila Smith

In the early morning hours Saturday, circus workers were out preparing to raise the big top.

Several of the animals were out for the public to see as people passed through on the first tour of the day.



The kids in the tour group got the opportunity to ride on a real live camel, surely a first for many of them.







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