After 146 years, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is closing the tent on its world-famous circus, “The Greatest Show on Earth.” The show is scheduled to finish its current tour and will have its final performance in May.
The circus has been operated by Feld Entertainment for the past 50 years, and its closing was announced in a message by CEO Kenneth Feld, who cited a drop in ticket sales and high cost of operation as deciding factors behind the closure.
“The decision was even more difficult because of the amazing fans that have become part of our extended circus family over the years, and we are extremely grateful to the millions of families who have made Ringling Bros. part of their lives for generations. We know Ringling Bros. isn’t only our family business, but also your family tradition,” Feld said.
Announcement of the show’s closure was a pleasing one for animal activists, who have rallied extensively against its use and treatment of wild animals. After years of facing criticism, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey gradually began to diminish the use of Asian elephants in the show, and permanently retired the creatures from shows last May. The elephants which were part of the touring shows were relocated to a Florida conservation center, conveniently also run by Feld Entertainment.
The company insists that once the show wraps, its current lineup of animals including tigers, lions, camels, alpacas, donkeys and kangaroos will each find suitable homes.
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s “Greatest Show on Earth” is currently traveling around North America with two distinct shows: Circus XTREME and Out of This World. The former will conclude in Providence, RI on May 7 while the latter of which is set to wrap two weeks later on May 21 in Uniondale, NY.
Tickets are available now for this family spectacle nearing its final days. Don’t miss out on seeing the “Greatest Show on Earth” before it’s too late!