The Woodward News

September 20, 2013

Circus coming to Mooreland

Rowynn Ricks
Woodward News

Woodward, Okla. — MOORELAND--What do unicycles, prancing ponies and jungle cats have to do with education?

You can find out this weekend as the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus comes to Mooreland as a fundraiser for the Bearcat Community Association (BCA).  The circus, which will be located in a field west of the new basketball gym, will have 2 performances on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. and at 4:30 p.m.

BCA member Jennifer Schnoebelen said the community association is "an organization of parents who want to help the schools however we can."

Schnoebelen said that includes everything from promoting school spirit to helping purchase needed equipment for both the Mooreland elementary and high school.

As an example of the type of support the BCA provides the schools, she said, "at the beginning of the school year we asked teachers to provide us with receipts for items they had purchased for their classrooms and we would reimburse them."

This year she said they were able to provide each elementary teacher with $100 to help offset any out-of-pocket expenses they may have had.

"We know teachers spend a lot of their own money on supplies for their classrooms and students," Schnoebelen said, noting "last year one of the coaches bought a student some tennis shoes.  There's just a lot of stuff like that you don't realize teachers have done."

But in order to reimburse teachers for those types of costs or to help purchase new playground equipment for the pre-kindergarten students or to fund any number of other BCA projects, Schnoebelen said the BCA must collect money through community fundraisers such as the upcoming circus performance.

She said the BCA will receive a percentage of all ticket sales from both performances on Sunday.

This is the second time the group has partnered with the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus for a fundraiser.

"We did it in 2009 for the first time and I think we raised over $2,000 that time," Schnoebelen said.  "I hope we will do just as well this year."

Especially since the BCA wasn't able to hold its annual golf tournament this past summer due to Boiling Springs Golf Course being closed for renovations, she said.

Even though it is a "small circus" with only one ring, Schnoebelen said the Culpepper & Merriweather show offers big entertainment.

She said this year's circus will likely feature performances by trapeze artist Miss Simone, unicycling family The Arlise Troupe, Miss Paulina's proud prancing ponies, a trio of performing jungle cats, and of course clowns.

"It's a lot of fun.  They are quite the entertainers, especially the clowns," Schnoebelen said.

Advanced tickets for the circus will be available through Friday at the Mooreland Leader office or the Mooreland branch of the Central National Bank of Enid.

Schnoebelen said the advanced tickets cost a little less and the BCA receives a greater percentage of the proceeds from the advanced ticket sales, however tickets will also be available at the gate prior to both shows on Sunday afternoon.