After the big top was set up Thursday morning at the Al Quaal Recreation Area in Ishpeming, it was only a matter of hours before the ring was full of kids ready to watch the circus.
The Culpepper & Merriweather Circus had plenty of fun and exciting acts for kids and parents to enjoy. The usual circus fair–popcorn, cotton candy, clowns, and magic tricks–all encompassed the show.
But there was one thing two girls from Ishpeming were most excited to see.
“I want to see the animals and all the stuff that they do,” Kristen Mattlia said, who came to the circus with her sister, Chelsea. “I want to see the lions and the tigers.”
“She (Chelsea) has never been to a circus, I have when I was little, but I don’t remember so I wanted to come to see what happens.”
Culpepper & Merriweather wanted to donate proceeds from the circus to an organization, and it approached the Ishpeming Volunteer Fire Department to be the benefactor. The department will use the proceeds for its fire prevention program.
“Well we appreciate anything we can get, it was very nice we were suggested for this, and it goes a long way in supporting our efforts,” IVFD Captain Carl Underwood said. “We go into the elementary schools and spend time with the kids, keep our videos up to date, some literature and coloring books, and that type of stuff to share with the kids to try and get the fire prevention message across.”