The Carson & Barnes Circus arrived in town last week Thursday, bringing its big top to Ripon’s business park on the city’s northeast side.

   During two performances that evening, guests from around Ripon were treated to high-wire acts, animals, clowns and plenty of shenanigans to entertain them.

   At right, did Rob Wittchow of Ripon realize what he was getting into when he volunteered last week Thursday at the circus? He was told knives would be thrown at him while he was chained to the board. But, while blindfolded, circus performers snuck up to him and slammed the knives into the plywood by hand — including one delicately placed between his legs, where a balloon waited to be popped. 

   Below right, a ring-twirling woman balances herself on an oversized ball while dazzling the audience.

   At bottom right, click on the photo to see how elephants were given a bath by firefighters from the Ripon Area Fire District.

For more photos from the event, read the Aug. 1,  2013 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.