Greatest Show on Earth Visits Pentagon Day Care
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Apr. 3, 2002 The children at the Pentagon Day Care Center received a special show from the performers of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus April 3.
Bello the Clown performs for the children of the Pentagon Day Care Center. About 30 performers from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus entertained their audience April 3, 2002. A circus spokeswoman said the children in the center on 9-11 "saw something that no adult should see or go through, and we felt they should have a special day." The performers have held similar shows in New York City for the same reason. Photo by Jim Garamone.
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
Led by Ringmaster Johnathan Lee Iverson, more than 30 performers from a variety of circus acts put on a show for the children.
"We wanted to do something special for these kids," said Iverson. "We've also put on performances in New York."
A circus spokeswoman said the children in the Pentagon Day Care Center had a tough time on Sept. 11. "We felt these kids saw something that no adult should see or go through, and we felt they should have a special day," she said.
Inclement weather forced the show inside, but Bello the Clown kept the kids laughing as he juggled and kept up a running patter.
Clown Steve Lough with his dogs Grock and Lucy used audience participation to involve the children in his act. And the eight-foot ceilings in the Day Care Center proved no obstacle for Human Design, performers Slawek Kielbasinski, Mikhail Kalinine and Daria Chamanskaia, whose displays of strength, agility and control amazed kids and parents alike.
A small break in the weather allowed the trampoline artist Steve Landin to show his prowess outdoors.
The Day Care Center workers also threw themselves into the spirit of the day. They made cotton candy, popcorn and hot dogs for the kids and many of the children sported face paintings. Many of the workers got some professional advice on how to improve their clown make-up.