You Don’t Need to Run Away to Join the Circus Anymore

By Nathan Ward

On a sunny day last summer, I looked up just in time to see a wildly tall woman stepping down F Street, a figure so tall that she had to bend down just to look in the tops of the downtown store windows. Then, acrobats raced by twirling, spinning, flipping heels over head. Then more clowns, young and old, short ones, tall ones and then unicycles spun by. The circus was in town!

The circus holds such a mythical place in human history that just the sight of circus people stirs the soul into an air of anticipation. I ran outside to greet the woman on stilts that turned out to be Jennifer Dempsey, founder of the Salida Circus. She was leading the entire local circus troupe to perform in the park and help raise awareness for Project Education Sudan, a non-profit that builds schools and hope in Southern Sudan.

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