The Ontario-based Garden Bros. Circus has a lot in common with that other three-ring sibling troupe. Its been around forever (well, since 1938), it boasts a few world records (for one thing, its the largest outdoor circus in North America), and it prefers to keep things in the family. Dad got a cold one day, and he grabbed my arm and said, Just go out there and repeat everything I say, recalls ringmaster Ian Garden Jr., who stepped into his fathers shoes 22 years ago. I was born into this business.
Ian and his brother Robert are part of a 70-year-old legacy that started with their grandfather and great-uncle. Things have changed much since then, says Ian. In fact, theyve changed since the last time the circus came to town. My priority is to keep [mixing up] the show, he says.
That means while traditional animal and high-wire acts are still part of the production, look out for extreme motorcyclists and a state-of-the-art laser-light show. I want to see the children smile, says Garden. My job is easy. I just sell fun and laughter.
Sat., April 7, 12 & 4 p.m.
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