Thursday, July 23, 2009

Big Top bonanza in Brooklyn: Cole Bros. Circus hits town

This summer heralds the 125th Anniversary of Cole Bros. Circus, the oldest, American Circus performing under the Big Top.

W. W. Cole, who inaugurated the Cole Bros. Circus title in 1884, began his circus career in 1871, amassing fortune and fame by bringing to cities and villages the most astounding marvels of the day.

Among the amazing attractions promoted by W. W. Cole, incandescent light — a single, glowing glass globe, powered by a steam engine — drew record crowds, with young and old alike filling Cole’s tent to witness the seemingly impossible invention.

The brightly lit tent of Cole Bros. Circus of the Stars bears slight resemblance to W. W. Cole’s 19th century Big Top, but the tradition of watching what appears unbelievable happen right before your eyes remains at Cole Bros. Circus.

The 2009 Edition of Cole Bros. Circus celebrates 125 years of circus history with a special performance reprising legendary circus acts of the past along with showcasing the talents of cirque nouveau artists.

The Toprasta Troupe, from Columbia, recreates the treacherous, three-tier, Seven-Man Pyramid on the High Wire. Russia’s Svetlana Golobolova exhibits grace, which belies her strength in an exquisitely executed gymnastic routine on aerial silks. Circus daredevils cast caution aside as they challenge The Globe of Death and Giant Gyro Wheel, with the zany Cole Bros. Clown Crew arriving in the nick of time to provide comic relief.

Elephants and acrobats, camels and jugglers, dogs and ponies, and arguably the world’s funniest mule take turns in the spotlight, and The Human Cannonball gets fired at every show.

Ticket prices start at free for children 12 and under with coupons distributed throughout the area including all Carvel Ice Cream Stores and available at Go to for more information.

The show comes to Midland Beach Park in Staten Island, on Father Capodanno Boulevard, now to July 26, with show times Monday-Friday at 5 and 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 2, 5 and 7 p.m. The show then moves to Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field at Aviator Sports & Recreation’s Hanger 5, July 27-August 2, with showtimes Monday-Friday at 5 and 8 p.m. (except Wednesday, when shows are at 10:30 a.m. and 8 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday at 2, 5 and 7 p.m.

On July 27, the FDNY opens the show with their Honor Guard. The NYPD Emerald Society performs God Bless America at the circus, July 29 at the 10:30 a.m. show.Tickets start at $17; $12 for children and seniors. Get $5 off adult tickets by purchasing in advance. For more, call 800-796-5672.


Anonymous,  July 23, 2009 at 11:56 PM  

Cole Brothers circus has one of the worst histories in taking care of its animal performers. The elephants are especially suffering. They are thin and are swaying back and forth constantly. This swaying behavior is stereotypical of an elephant in captivity who is "losing its mind". These elephants are held captive against their will, forced to travel in a small semi-trailer weekly and perform dumb tricks for locals who don't know what goes on behind the scenes. Please read up on charges against Cole Bros. at

Anonymous,  July 24, 2009 at 2:18 PM  

Swaying back and forth is normal behavior for elephants. Cole Bros. Circus is in Staten Island now, and elephants looked fat and happy. Better than believing all you read on the internet, go to Cole Bros. Circus and make up your own mind.

Anonymous,  September 26, 2009 at 5:25 PM  

That false report has been circulated by Peta for years...they have to keep rehashing false info in order to keep raking in the bucks to keep their Board of Directors rolling in dough. Try asking a peta member how many animal organizations they support...what's that? NONE? hmmmmm...WHERE DOES ALL THAT MONEY GO????????????????????

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