0

Special circus preview show brings out a crowd

Madeline Ellis, 11, left, and Katie Cappello, 11, both of Suwanee, peruse the costumes provided Friday during a special preview for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s latest show, Built to Amaze!, at the Arena at Gwinnett Center. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

Madeline Ellis, 11, left, and Katie Cappello, 11, both of Suwanee, peruse the costumes provided Friday during a special preview for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s latest show, Built to Amaze!, at the Arena at Gwinnett Center. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

photo

Dacula resident Ashley Lange, 12, poses for a photo Friday during a special preview for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s latest show, Built to Amaze!, at the Arena at Gwinnett Center. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

photo

Audience members watch as performer Tabayara Maluenda as he explains how he trains his tigers. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

photo

Kyle Spencer, 25, smiles for a photo wearing one of the costumes. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen) Kyle Spencer, 25, smiles for a photo wearing one of the costumes provided by Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

Ashley Lange looked like a seasoned circus performer posing with a big smile in a bright pink dress emblazoned with gold stars.

Nearby at the wardrobe rack, 11-year-olds Madeline Ellis and Katie Cappello laughed while looking through several costumes, all clothing children could try on during a special preview for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s latest show, Built to Amaze!, at the Arena at Gwinnett Center.

Lange, a 12-year-old Dacula resident, and Ellis and Cappello, both of Suwanee, were three of more than 200 children to attend the Friday evening event, which was sponsored by Gas South and preceded the full circus show.

The preview was open to special-needs children and their friends and family and included tiger demonstrations, performances by clowns and dancers, a unicycle basketball game, an elephant demonstration and more.

This is Gas South’s fifth year hosting the special preview.

“It’s been an event that has grown and become even more special every year that we’ve done it,” said Kevin Greiner, president and CEO of Gas South. “We have really had a great time treating kids and their families to a great experience at the circus year after year.”