One-day circus a thrill in Enon

Every mother should have a secret weapon. Yep. When the children are little we all need something that will captivate the kids for a few minutes while we do something important.

My secret weapon was “Kidsongs - Day at the Circus.” First I had it as a VCR tape then I upgraded to DVD so I didn’t have to rewind. If I put that show on, I could have 30 minutes of uninterrupted work.

It worked like magic as the tape told the story of a traveling circus setting up, performing, then tearing down. Because we had three kids, we watched it so much that we had all the songs memorized.

Parents using this DVD need to be cautious because overexposure can have the parents knowing all the words to the songs, including the really corny songs which they cannot get out of their heads.

A week ago I thought my eyes were playing a trick on me when I saw a circus tent standing in the middle of the soccer fields at Indian Valley School in Enon, and my memories of that secret weapon tape immediately began to play the, “The circus is coming to town,” song in my head.

The next day I drove past and it was all gone. The only evidence of the circus being there was one portable toilet next to a soccer net and a few ruts in the grassy field. There wasn’t even any trash.

So was I dreaming? I checked at the Enon government offices to ask questions.

“They just blew into town at 5 a.m.,” said Kristy Thome, village of Enon administrative assistant, who added that they blew out just as quickly Friday morning.

Unlike the traveling shows of the past this modern day circus makes use of modern technology, she explained and even does a background check of all employees. As a mom, she appreciated that.

Enon Chief of Police Lew Wilcox said the Culpepper and Merriweather Circus was a good group to work with. Wilcox said that Greenon Local School District was very cooperative, and the community was supportive of the event.

As Wilcox explained, “the advance guy” showed up the day before to make sure all was ready then the circus caravan arrived around dawn on Thursday.

“They had the big top up around 9 a.m. or so. It takes an hour and 45 minutes to put up the big tent and they do it every day,” he said. “They have it down to a science.”

After setting up they rested and prepared for the performance.

During the day, three of the ladies with the circus were sighted at Designs by Tanya for appointments. I imagine other members of the group shopped in local stores or grabbed a bite in one of our restaurants.

During the intermission of the second show Thursday night, Wilcox noticed that some of the items like entrance gates were already disappearing into the trucks. Tear down had begun. Less than two hours after the last show was done the tent had been taken down and was packed. The traveling troupe then slept and prepared for an early morning departure for their next town.

The circus had been in Farmersville the day before and moved on to Jeffersonville after Enon. I imagine they love the short commutes when it works out. They will barely finish the coffee in their travel mugs before arriving in the next town.

Wilcox referred to this circus as being like a big family. There are 26 employees who travel together from town to town for eight months of the year. Their home base is in Oklahoma. This year they do their “eastern” route which includes Ohio, Indiana and north. Next year they will do their western route.

Both performances had great turn outs of young and not-so-young circus lovers, Wilcox said. This means it was a good fundraiser for Enon’s “Shop with a Cop” program in December. He hopes to see them again in two years.

I imagine Enon’s ladies and gentlemen of all ages will agree.

Last time I played my secret weapon circus DVD for the grand kids, the little ones were soon joined on the sofas by their parents who sang along.

And I had 30 free minutes to get supper ready.