Area non-profits helped by circus tour
When John Ringling North II heard that the Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus would close in May, he was distressed, but he didn’t have time to dwell on the news because he had his own circus, the Kelly Miller Circus, to produce.
“It is heartbreaking to see the end of the circus that bears the Ringling name. It is such a part of American history,” said North, who learned circus operation from his father Henry Ringling North and his uncle John Ringling North. His great uncles were the famous Ringling Brothers, his grandmother, their only sister. “Growing up in the Greatest Show on Earth, it's in my roots. There’s circus in my blood.”
North has put his life’s blood into the 79-year old Kelly Miller Circus, that he has owned for a decade.
“Our circus is an up close and personal salute to the origins of the circus combined with looking to its future,” North said. “It is a tribute to my family who founded the Ringling Bros Circus in 1884.”
On Wednesday, April 19, in Marble Hill at the Marble Hill Baseball Park, north east of fire house, the Kelly Miller Circus, sponsored by Marble Hill Optimists, will present two shows at 4:30 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at Peoples Community Bank, Bollinger County Co-op, Lutesville Ford, Bollinger County Library. Free children’s (under 12) tickets online, for more information call 580-326-8345 or go to kellymillercircus.com
April schedule for Missouri is below.
For North an important part of his circus is sponsors and giving back to each community. Sponsors such as Kiwanis, Lions, 4-H, Rotary and numerous chambers of commerce, fire departments and churches receive a generous portion of the tickets sold. Additional supplies needed while the circus is in town are purchased locally.
“This means a lot to me, knowing we help the economy in each community. Being invited back year after year is an honor,” said North.
This year the Kelly Miller Circus will present more than 400 shows from the Midwest to New England. The spring Missouri tour includes Farmington, Sullivan and House Springs before moving into Illinois.
Among the Kelly Miller Circus accolades is Lake Cities United Methodist Church, “The community was thrilled by the event and we received many kudos for a job well done. We look forward to next year…”
Kelly Miller Circus Arkansas Tour Schedule April 2017:
Wednesday, April 19, Marble Hill, Marble Hill Baseball Park, north east of fire house, Sponsored by Marble Hill Optimists, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m. Tickets available at Peoples Community Bank, Bollinger County Co-op, Lutesville Ford, Bollinger County Library. Free children’s (under 12) tickets online, for more information call 580-326-8345
Two days, four shows
Thursday, April 20 & Friday, April 21, Farmington, Engler Park, 651 Vargo Road, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m. Sponsored by St, Francois Rotary Club. Tickets available at First Community State Bank all St, Francois County locations, Belgrade State Bank, Desloge and Farmington locations, Mike’s Market Bismarck, Hastings Unlimited, Farmington. Free childrens (under 12) tickets online, for more information call 580-326-8345
Saturday, April 22, Sullivan, City of Sullivan Fairgrounds, 999 Mattox Dr., 2 & 5 p.m., sponsored by Sullivan Parks & Recreation Department, tickets are available at Peoples Bank, Sullivan branch First State Community Bank, both Sullivan locations, City Hall Collector or Parks Office, Frick’s Market Sullivan location, B&B Kwik Stop.
Sunday, April 23, House Springs, the Valley Junior HIgh School grounds, 4300 Gravois Rd., 2 & 5 p.m. sponsored by Northwest Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, tickets are available at Eagle Bank and TRust, House Springs, Rockwood Bank, High Ridge, Bi State Landscape Supply, Rock Creek, Hwy. 30, Jiffy Cafe and Steakhouse, Gravois and LIttle Brennan Road. for more information call 580-326-8345.
The Kelly Miller Circus has entertained millions of American and Canadian citizens establishing itself in the historical fabric of the American Tented Circus. It has been honored as America’s 2nd largest Big Top show and “America’s One Ring Wonder. In 2007 the show was purchased by John Ringling North II who maintains high standards in all aspects from the grounds to the highest point of the Big Top. Those high standards, world-class entertainment and contributing to the economy in each community in which it performs, the Kelly Miller Circus is welcomed back year after year. The Kelly Miller Circus will celebrate its 80th year in 2018.
About John Ringling North II
“Keeping the past, performing today and exploring the future” is more than a catchphrase for John Ringling North II. He lives the motto daily as a direct descendant of the famous Ringling Brothers who were his great uncles and his grandmother, their only sister. Born into this most famous of circus families, John grew up on the “Greatest Show on Earth” and learned circus operation from his father Henry Ringling North, and Uncle John Ringling North. His dedication is evident is his purchase of the Kelly Miller Circus 10 years ago (that was celebrated by circus critics) and his search for ways to make the circus appealing to all ages while honoring the nation’s 300 plus years of circus history.
Pre-performance interviews are available with John Ringling North II. To request an interview send email to Linda Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org or text or call 620-370-9273.
Circus Day media tours are welcome; from the early morning hours, when the big top is raised into the air, to the very moment when the king pole races to the ground at the end of the day. To schedule send email to Linda Ward at email@example.com call or text Linda Ward at 620-370-9273.
Photos are available at kellymillercircus.com.