1 A TRIP TO
2 Story prepared by: When you go to Circus Flora, there will be lots of things to see and experience. The circus will take place in a big, red tent that is set up on a lot next to Powell Symphony Hall, where the St. Louis Symphony plays. Outside the tent, there will be many things to do and see. On one side of the tent, kids will show off wonderful skills, such as juggling and riding a unicycle. You might even see a man on stilts, which will make him very tall. There might be quite a few people surrounding these performers, so it may get a bit crowded, plus the people watching the acts will cheer and clap.
3 If you need to use the restroom, there will be portable bathrooms outside the red tent. They will be located near both exits. Because the toilets have to use chemicals to keep clean, they can have a strong smell. When it s time to enter the big top for the circus, spectators will line up. You will wait in line, then give your ticket to an usher, and he or she will help you find your seat. When you enter, you might notice that there is air conditioning and the tent is cool. You will hear the air conditioner blowers and music. Inside, you will notice that the circus tent is in the shape of a circle, and all of the seats surround a central ring. On one side of the ring, there will be a building set up this will be where most of the performers enter and exit the ring. No matter where you sit, you will have a good view of what will be happening in the circus ring. You will notice equipment in the ring, and wires and poles reaching up to the top of the tent. Throughout the show, workers will use the equipment for different acts and performances.
4 There will be lights all throughout the tent, and they will shine brighter and darker at different times. There also will be spotlights that will shine occasionally. These lights are meant to direct your attention to different parts of the performance as the action changes location. Depending on where you are sitting, sometimes a very bright light may shine in your eyes. If this bothers you, you can either close your eyes or look away for a moment. The spotlight won t last long. There will be many different noises inside the tent. There will be people talking over a loud speaker and a real band playing musical instruments. The band will be located to one side of the building. This music will involve drums, horns and cymbals, and at times, it can be very loud. The band will be playing music in the background for the entire show as a way to help excite the audience and cue the circus performers for different acts. If the music gets too loud, you can cover your ears or use earplugs. If there are times when it is too loud and you need to take a break, you can walk slowly and quietly to the exit and go outside. Outside to the left of the main tent is a smaller white tent. You can go in here for a quiet area to take a break.
5 During the show, one performer will serve as the main announcer and help narrate the story. You will notice that she wears an interesting costume and has her face painted white. When the show is over and everyone has gone home, she will take her makeup off. There also will be a man called the handyman who will come into the ring several times. He will do a lot of good tricks. He s very silly. At one point, he will teach you to clap in rhythm with him. It can be hard to do, but just try your best and have fun. You will notice during the show that there will be many performers who are trained to do different kinds of wonderful acts. They train for hours and hours for years to be able to perform like they do. You should never try these kinds of stunts on your own or without lots of training. They can be very dangerous. Don t worry, though. What the performers will be doing may look very scary, but they will be safe. Some of the acts you will see include trapeze artists, jugglers, trained cats, high-wire walkers, acrobats, and horse-riding and trampoline acrobats.
6 One act involves horses. Anywhere from one to three horses gallop around the ring while their riders do tricks. The horses move very fast and kick up a bit of dust. Another woman stands in the middle of the ring directing them. During this performance, you will need to stay back from the circus ring. If the horses make you nervous, you can close your eyes, turn around or go to the break tent for a few minutes. In between acts, workers often will have to run very quickly into the circus ring to move equipment. Many times, performers will use the aisles by your seat as a way to enter the circus ring. You may not notice them because they will come from behind you, and this can sometimes startle you. Performers will walk through the audience to get into and out of the circus ring.
7 The narrator and the performers love it when the audience claps and cheers them on. Sometimes, it can be really loud, but the louder it gets, the more the performers like it. Sometimes, the performers will even pause and wait for the audience to cheer them on before they will continue their act. Other performers might come over and make a comment to you or ask for a high five. About halfway through the show, there will be an intermission, which is like taking a break from the performance. It will be a time for the actors to take a rest and for the guests to have a chance to get up and stretch. At this time, you can stay in your seat, or you can get up and walk around. There will be a concession stand, where you can buy snacks or drinks. You are allowed to bring in some snacks if you are on a special diet or aren t a fan of the food there. There are also merchandise booths where you can buy toys and circus-themed items. Many people also will use this time to go to the bathroom. You might have to wait in line for all of these choices. There also will be a neat area where you can stand in front of a Circus Flora sign and take your picture with different props. At the end of the show, there will be lots of cheering and applauding, and all of the performers will come back out for a last round of applause. The performers will then leave the tent and wait at the exits, so you can shake their hands, talk to them and get their autographs on the program if you want.
8 Circus Flora's "One Summer on Second Street" is a wonderful performance, and we think you will love it. Please enjoy! This special Sensory Friendly Performance is a collaboration between Circus Flora and Easter Seals Midwest, which is committed to helping individuals with developmental disabilities including autism learn, live, work and participate in the community Olive Street, Ste Barrett Parkway Drive, Suite 300 St. Louis, MO Ballwin, MO EasterSealsMidwest.org