Sunday, February 22, 2009
The Greatest Show On Earth
Elephants and tigers and horses and dogs – clowns and sky fliers and rockets shooting people – bright lights and shiny clothes and music so loud you could feel it…Yep, we went to the circus Saturday morning and it was a wonderful sensory experience for Ashley!
I had never taken Ashley to the circus before because I wasn’t sure she would enjoy it, but circuses have really changed since I was a child. It was almost more of a stage show than anything else. I was wrong to thing Ashley would be overwhelmed. I don’t think she ever stopped smiling the entire two hours.
When I decided to try the circus this year, I contacted the Coliseum (our city’s venues for shows such as this) and asked about accessibility. My call was returned by a special lady named Joanne who went out of her way to make things work for Ashley and her wheelchair.
We had three great seats only about 6 feet from the ring. The seats were on a raised platform, so there was no problem with people sitting in front of Ashley and blocking her view. We were the only people on the platform which meant Ashley did not have to deal with her anxiety that comes with crowds of people.
Before the show, children were invited down to the ring to meet the performers. I couldn’t get Ash’s wheelchair down to the ring, but that didn’t stop the performers from coming to her. Every last one of them was pleasant and eager to meet Ashley and have their picture taken with her.
Once the show started, the next two hours passed by in a flash of lights, music, smoke, and pure entertainment! I just have to say it again – the circus of today is nothing like the circus of my childhood! We will go again and again – anytime Ringling Brothers comes to town!!