Elephant Sanctuary welcomes decision to close Ringling Bros. Circus
It's been a long run for the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus, but it all comes to an end this May with its final performance in Uniondale, NY.
The name Ringling Brothers conjures up memories of flying trapeze acts, lions, tigers, popcorn and peanuts. But the big draw was always the elephant acts.
When the circus came to Nashville, the usual venue was Municipal Auditorium, and it was also one of the hottest tickets in town. But over the years the lure of the circus began to wane, particularly in an age of smart phones and tablets.
Despite declining audiences, the circus was still enough of a draw to make it a viable business for Feld Entertainment, which bought the circus more than five decades ago. Kenneth Feld, CEO of Feld Entertainment, was under constant pressure over the years from animal activists, who maintained the animals were abused with bull hooks, broom handles and sharp objects as part of their performance training.