There will be high-flying acrobatics and performing elephants on display this Saturday at McMinnville Civic Center when Circus Pages makes its annual visit.
Circus Pages, now in its 27th year, has included Warren County on its regular circuit for more than a decade.
“For people who have been coming to our show for years, this show will be a lot different,” said Dicenta Pages, one of the many family performers.
The circus will have three Civic Center shows Saturday at 12, 3 and 6 p.m. Traditional favorites remain like the lions and tigers act, along with upside down motorcycles in the globe of death. But there are new features too such as a humorous clown routine, trick riders on camels, and an amazing juggler.
The circus world received a jolt in January when Ringling Bros. announced it will end its 146-year run in May.
“There are a lot of people who are happy about it and there are a lot of people who are sad about it too,” said Pages. “It was certainly upsetting for us. I myself was with Ringling Bros. for four years, and many of us here have been there at different times, so it was heartbreaking news for us.”
Pages said she has worked with tigers for 17 years and that was her act when she was with Ringling Bros. Despite climbing inside a cage with big cats capable of killing her, Pages said she wasn’t nervous.
“I grew up with it so it was something I didn’t mind,” said Pages. “With tigers, you always have to have your eyes and ears open and pay attention.”
On promotional material advertising the Circus Pages show in McMinnville it says, “May be the last chance to see performing elephants.” Pages said they would like to continue having elephants in their circus, but she doesn’t know what the future will hold.
“We’re going to keep having them as long as we can, but you never know what kind of laws there may be,” said Pages. “Everybody else is kind of doing away with it, but I believe animals are the main reason why people come to the circus. We make sure to give them the best care, it’s the best of the best care. We just want to make audiences know this is something that might not be around forever.”
In addition to watching elephants perform at Circus Pages shows, elephant rides are offered during intermission.