Travel circus pays one-day visit to Columbia

Monday, September 9, 2013 | 11:45 p.m. CDT
The Whirling Brothers Circus on Monday featured camels, bike tricks and prizes for the audience.

COLUMBIA — In a half-packed show at the Central Missouri Events Center, home of the Boone County Fair, members of the Whirling Brothers Circus rode motocross bikes across the sky, organized camels in a military formation and entertained spectators with their trapeze tricks.

"Welcome to the happiest show on earth," yelled James Legros.

Legros, originally from Boston, has been with the Circus for two and a half years. "It's like family here," he said.

The show features performers from Russia, Kurdistan, Mexico, Florida and Texas.

Jason Walker of Sarasota, Fla., is one of the show’s many acts. He lines up his six camels in a military formation. A fifth-generation circus performer, Walker grew up traveling 10 months of the year.

"Camels have emotions. They are the coolest. They let me know when they are happy, sad and hungry," he said.

He bathes them in the morning, feeds them hay and puts them back in their truck at the end of the night.

The next show is today in Chillicothe at the Litten Ag Center. On Wednesday, the circus will be in Kirksville at the NEMO Fair Association. This is the circus' first full outdoor tour.

"It's a trial run now, but we've been enjoying it. Everyone seems to have been enjoying it," Legros said.


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