The circus synergy made sense: This is, after all, the Year of the Dragon.
Guests at Friday’s special presentation at the Huntington Center included members of the Toledo chapter of Families with Children from China. The event also featured a performance by dancers from the Chinese Association of Greater Toledo.
Families were treated to the razzle-dazzle of circus acts, plus clowning, juggling, and nods to Chinese culture.
“I think it’s wonderful for them to have a link back to China,” said Laura Brewster, of Grand Rapids, Ohio, who brought her four children — two biological and two adopted — to the event.
“We’re the missionaries of mirth,” Mr. Iverson said.
Children watched, and then joined in, as performers demonstrated kung fu skills. Entertainers spun Chinese yo-yos, and dancerstaught the children a hip-shaking, hand-clapping routine in an arena decorated with dragons.
Luanne Billstein, founder of the local FCC chapter, said the group supports and connects families who have adopted children from China. It also welcomes families who have adopted children from elsewhere, including other Asian countries.
The group likes to offer opportunities such as this one for families to experience Chinese culture, she said. Mrs. Billstein serves on the board of the Chinese Association of Greater Toledo, which she said was approached by the circus to participate in the event.
Her daughter Courtney Billstein, 15, attended and enjoyed the circus performance. “I liked everything. I liked the fact that they were able to mix Chinese culture with still being funny,” said Courtney, who was adopted from China when she was about 4 and returned to see her orphanage last year.
The circus continues today at 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Sunday at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. at the Huntington Center in downtown Toledo. Tickets are available through the Huntington Center box office.
Contact Vanessa McCray at: email@example.com or 419-724-6065.