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Paynesville Press - July 16, 2003

Circus coming to town!

By Michael Jacobson

The Paynesville Area Chamber of Commerce is bringing the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus to Paynesville on Friday, July 18, for two shows.

The shows will be at 5 p.m. and again at 7:30 p.m. in the practice fields at Paynesville Area High School. The circus site is just to the north of the student parking lot at PAHS.

The circus will also have a free endangered species show at 10 a.m., and will have a midway with elephant and pony rides, concessions, and more starting at 4:30 p.m.

Mayor Jeff Thompson will serve as the ringmaster for the first show, and elementary principal Todd Burlingame will serve as ringmaster for the second show.

The Culpepper & Merriweather Circus, in its 20th season, includes amazing aerialist Tavana Luvas on the trapeze; Miss Stephanie on the rings; Tiny the Clown; Casey Cainen and his animals; the Chimal family; and African elephants Barbara and Connie.

Culpepper & Merriweather approached the Paynesville Area Chamber of Commerce last summer about bringing the circus to town. The Chamber board thought it was a great idea, said Chamber president Jeff Bertram.

"It's something different. I think it's great to have in our community," said Bertram, who is looking forward to seeing workers set up the big-top tent for the day.

According to Press records, Paynesville last hosted a circus in 1991.

This will not be an annual event, said Bertram.

Advance tickets for the circus shows at 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. are $7 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under in advance. Infants under two years of age are free.

Tickets are available in advance at Community First National Bank, Farmers & Merchants State Bank, the Central Minnesota Federal Credit Union, Paynesville SuperValu, and Joel's Family Foods.

Tickets are $2 more at the door.

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