“The Greatest Show On Earth” Closing
After 146 years, “The Greatest Show on Earth” is closing its doors. Kenneth Feld, the chairman and CEO of Feld Entertainment, which purchased the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus in 1967, says that declining attendance and revenues were to blame, as were high-profile battles with animal-rights activists over the circus’ treatment of animal attractions.
In a letter on the company website, Feld wrote that ticket sales declined dramatically after the company made the decision to retire their elephants in 2015. The ex-circus elephants were sent to an elephant conservation center in Florida after years of pressure from activists.
Most of the circus’ 500 employees will be out of work; the remaining circus animals will be given to “suitable homes.”