CIRCUS Joseph Ashton will celebrate World Circus Day (WCD) in Midland on April 16.
WCD is celebrated on the third Saturday of April each year under the patronage of Princess Stephanie of Monaco.
Starting on Friday, there will be regular shows over the weekends during the Midland season, in addition to the WCD shows.
The Ashton family and guest performer Taylor Nicole, from the US-based Wenatchee
Youth Circus, will celebrate Saturday during their Midland visit with a grand parade and prize giveaways, putting on shows at 1pm and 7.30pm.
There will be prizes for children who come dressed as their favourite circus star and join in the circus parade.
This year’s World Circus Day theme is ‘collaboration and co-operation for the future
Taylor, the daughter of two performers, has been performing professionally since she was 12 and is spending a gap year honing her skills with Circus Joseph Ashton.
Bekki Ashton said her family have had an unofficial exchange program with the youth circus since the 1960s, when a long-term friendship was formed between the Ashtons and YC founder and director Paul Pugh, also known as Guppo the clown, who died in January.
“In the 1970s, Joseph aged nine, travelled and performed with the WYC with his cousin Marty,” Ashton said.
“Over the decades, many graduating students spend a gap year with the Ashtons, fine tuning their circus skills and deciding if this is what they want to pursue in life.
“Taylor is now spending her gap year here at Circus Joseph Ashton, learning all she can to take home and help the next generation of WYC performers.”
Acts for the Midland season include buckskin horse shows and the Ashton brothers joining their father on the Wheel of Death, where Joseph performs the forward somersault on the outside of the wheel.
The circus is offering the free tickets through joining the City of Swan’s Membership Rewards Card program, backed by the Advocate, which helps businesses provide discounts and boost the local community and economy.