by Aaron Neiman, 2019-20 Circus Chairman

Nobles of El Riad, I have the unfortunate duty as Circus Chairman to inform you that due to COVID-19 all circuses for El Riad have been canceled for 2020.  We had been working diligently with the Arena staff and were beginning to work out what our event would have looked like with the CDC guidelines and at a reduced capacity, so not to draw any additional scrutiny as we would have been one of the first few large events in the region. 

After this process had begun, our circus promoter George Carden reached out to us to inform us due to numerous cancellations, he unfortunately had to cease operations for the year. This was not a decision that he took lightly as obviously it has significant financial impact on himself as well as us. Not to mention, George and his crew look forward to coming to El Riad every year as we are like family to them as well as they are to us. 

I know many of you look forward to the circus every year as it is a great event to show ourselves to the public as well as bond with our fellow nobles at a fun event. The circus personally means a lot to me as I grew up at this event. I fondly remember helping the Fife & Drum every circus carrying 50 pound ice bags up the stairs for the pop that they were butchering. This gave me my first taste of volunteering for the shrine and what the shrine means to our community. Also, I built lasting friendships doing so, of which I still have today and led me to be a noble of this great temple. 

This year is one for the books and I know we will never forget it, but it will make us stronger and we will get through it together. I wrote my experience and the feeling I have for the circus to encourage you to bring those acquaintances to our circus next year so they can see the fun and enjoyment we have while volunteering, so maybe they will get the bug we all have and want to join the shrine. I look forward to seeing you all around throughout the rest of the year and especially at the circus next year.