Dear Smirkus Family and Friends,
We’ve settled into our lot in Kennebunkport, ME. Despite a muddy load-in, it’s a picturesque lot next to the Rockin’ Horse Stables where a trio of horses looked on while we set up our trailers and tents.
In honor of the animals that are so generously sharing their home with us, I thought I would use this blog post to introduce you to the animals that are part of the Smirkus family this summer.
One thing that you’ll find out about me within minutes of knowing me is that I love animals. When I’m away from my dog, Sam, approximately 90% of my personality becomes devoted to being aggressively interested in other people’s pets, which kind of makes this the perfect workplace for me.
While we don’t have any critters in the show, there are several that make their home with us while we travel.
The first is Chyra who belongs to our Tent Boss Nat and our Administrative Assistant Gunna. Chyra is known around the lot for being very attached to and protective of her people. She is frequently seen trailing after Nat while tent crew is working and her tail wags like no other dog I’ve seen. It has to be seen. Chyra is a dog with plenty of muscle, the best of which is her heart.
Our other tent crew dog is Taba. Seen here with his summer haircut and pink hair, he is far cooler than I could ever hope to be. He belongs to Dave, a member of our tent crew, and Hannah, part of our Pie Car staff. His load-out duty is popcorn clean-up which he performs dutifully. A frequent joke around the lot is Taba’s human-like behavior. Depending on who you ask, Taba is an exceptionally person-like dog, a person in a dog suit, or a muppet. Regardless, he is a very sweet, very fluffy dog who will let you scratch his head or his butt, provided that Dave is within eyesight.
Louka is an 11 year old Husky and extremely active for his age. He’s currently working on shedding his winter coat that he inexplicably grew in June and thus is supposed to stay away from the Troupers while in costume. This is hard for him because his owner is our Wardrobe Supervisor and he’s very friendly. He, like his mom, is from Montreal, and so responds to both French and English commands. Louka is, as they say, a bon chien.
Wash is a Husky mix who likewise decided to grow his winter coat during the summer. He belongs to Nikki, our Assistant Head Concessionaire and Ben our Technical Director. Wash is perhaps the cheeriest dog you’ve ever met. His appearance in the lot will be met with excited cries of “Wash dog!” which is also his tag on Instagram. He loves people, being petted, and other dogs but is at his happiest when running outside.
Next up is Bella. Bella is the Wunderle’s dog. Sara is our Assistant Circus Operations Director and Troy is our Artistic Director. Bella is their beauty of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who is extremely cute and enjoys giving kisses. One of my duties as PR intern is to supervise interviews and I love watching Troy give interviews for two reasons. One is that he’s a very good interview and makes my job very easy, and two is that I get to pet his dog while he’s busy. She is a gem of a pup.
Our last dog is Gypsy who belongs to Judy our Circus Operations Director. Gypsy is a beautiful chocolate lab who is a bit of a showgirl herself. She and Judy often compete in obedience competitions and they demonstrated a bit of this during our No-Talent Talent Show during pre-tour. While in Sandwich, MA, our lot was next to a tennis court and a baseball and softball field so Gypsy, ever the retriever, made it her job to collect all the forgotten balls she could find as you can see from the picture above.
An honorable mention goes to our Marketing Department’s very own Shadow the pug, who belongs to Angelia, our Communications Manager.
While not on tour, Shadow is a huge circus fan and is supporting us back home in Vermont.
We’ve got many quality circus pups on tour with us this year. Come visit us in Kennebunkport and maybe you can spot a few (ask the owners for permission before you pet them though).