Last week, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus rolled into Colorado Springs.
And for one week, it was the Greatest Neighborhood on Earth.
At least the most unique neighborhood in town.
It’s the only true mobile home neighborhood anywhere. Here it is, 30 silver coach cars lined up for a half mile along Interstate 25 and Monument Valley Park.
You might think your neighbor is a clown. Or your homeowners association is populated by them. But this neighborhood is full of them. Here’s a look at Ringling’s class of clowns from its web site:
I’ve seen the clowns perform and they are a funny bunch.
In chatting with people on the train, I understand they are equally funny in private.
Paul Lanquist, 59, of New Orleans, is a porter for the circus. He’s worked for Ringling Bros. 10 years. He said the clowns are “off the wall” at times and keep everyone laughing. Here’s a look at Paul, standing on the Uintah Street bridge:
Paul said the clowns are pranksters. And they love birthday parties. In fact, Paul won’t tell anyone his birthday because he doesn’t want to get a pie in the face!
“I’ve been real careful not to tell them,” he said, laughing.
Another circus worker, Mike Murphy, 41, of New York, said there are different communities on the train. Performers and dancers tend to stick together, he said.
Mike works in transportation, getting equipment off the train and to the arenas. He said working guys like him hang out together.
The circus provides living quarters for its staff of 300. Newcomers generally get smaller rooms while long-time employees typically get roomier quarters. Most bring their own TVs. Some even hook up satellites to get programming.
It’s no uncommon to find childrens’ toys scattered about the train.
The train was around for a week, stretching out from Uintah Street south to the pedestrian bridge over Interstate 25. Here is sits over Uintah.
Here’s a stylized look at the circus train from the circus web site: