Category Archives: News Articles

All the most recent stories published in the local media of the towns Circus Imagination visits!
Read articles, watch videos and see pictures!

The Kids Are In The Ring

image

Howard Yune/ Napa Valley Register

Under the not-so-big tent of Circus Imagination, spectators on hay bales could see lions, a lion tamer, tigers and the Champagne Sisters acrobats. Only instead of literal animals and death-defying performers, the circus master, Caton Raintree-Hegwer, called for little volunteers from the hay-bale bleachers to do more than watch the show – but rather to become, with costumes and make-believe, Tina the Tightrope Walker, Sandow the Strong, Deadeye McBang.

“We’ll stick a brave dude – or lady – and blast ‘em away before your very own eyes!” Raintree-Hegwer, dressed in a red topcoat and black top hat, shouted in a super-caffeinated patter mixing carnival barker with boxing ring announcer – and sounding much like the boy that Raintree-Hegwer, 36, confesses to still be at heart, nearly 15 years after taking over the traveling attraction from his father.

“When I pick up the microphone,

I’m 10 years old again, playing make-believe with my friends,” said Raintree-Hegwer, who leads up to 300 performances a year in the Western states with his wife, Carolina. “It’s not a job so much as it is a lifestyle.”…

He and Carolina, who are based in Garden Valley in El Dorado County, bring their costumes, props and blue-and-yellow tent to fairs as distant as Hawaii, Washington state and Utah – and to the Napa fair for three performances on each of its five days.

“The amount of energy we put out to keep up with 30 sugar-hyped kids takes a lot of us, but when you you were a kid, you never thought about how much energy you were using,” he said before Sunday’s first performance. “You were in the moment. You just had fun.

“What gets me is seeing parents who say, ‘Oh my kids are too shy for this!’ And then they perform excellently, and we’ve opened away to a range of creativity for them.”

Circus Imagination’s opening show on Sunday reached its climax with the hazardous-sounding Ring of Fire. One by one, the play-acting lions and tigers took their jumps – through a Hula-Hoop strung with flame-red streamers – amid a final round of applause from their parents.

As the show wound down, the circus master asked one favor of the departing children — that they let their creativity and playfulness flow, rather than go dormant in front of a screen.

“Don’t just watch TV,” Raintree-Hegwer exhorted his young spectators-turned-performers. “Find some Halloween costumes and things, and find your own circus imagination!”…

Read the story live at: http://molosyndicate.com/3/1-1329

Read more here: http://napavalleyregister.com/news/local/at-napa-fair-circus-the-kids-are-in-the-ring/article_434025d3-c6ee-5768-a529-c6cbae56723d.html

 

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News Quotes and Stories About Circus Imagination

breaking-news

Sacramento Today –

http://www.sacramentotoday.net/news/templates/community.asp?articleid=1676&zoneid=1

 “Circus Imagination – Kids can join the circus using their imagination with props and costumes that are provided. The Ringmaster guides them through a fantasy adventure and before they know it, they have created their own world – something they can take home with them for many hours of backyard adventures.”

Los Banos Enterprise –

http://www.losbanosenterprise.com/2014/04/25/219910_circus-imagination-returns-to.html?sp=/99/114/&rh=1

“Inside a colorful circus tent is where imaginations run wild at the Merced County Spring Fair. Ringmaster Caton Hegwer and costume coordinator Carol Raintree-Hegwer handpick kids from the audience to take part in an interactive show designed to get children to use their imaginations.”

“It’s a fabulous show,” said Karen Searle, owner of Fair Executives (…) “It’s not just interactive for the kids and their parents, even the audience enjoys it.”

Merced Sun Star

http://www.mercedsunstar.com/news/local/community/los-banos/article3289189.html

“The purpose of the show is to try and teach kids there are lots of things to do outdoors,” (…) “You can have a circus in your backyard using things you have at your home, just by using your imagination.”

Napa Valley Register

http://napavalleyregister.com/news/local/children-s-acts-challenge-the-imagination-at-the-fair/article_545097a2-a5cc-11df-a8ec-001cc4c03286.html

“Maybe you’re a circus buff who’s been under the Ringling Brothers big top and the Cirque du Soleil cute top. But have you witnessed a circus where pint-sized children are turned into elephants and human cannonballs?”

Contra Costa Fair

http://contracostafair.com/entertainer/circus-imagination/

“Circus Imagination is a circus where the kids actually get to run away and join the circus for a day”

Holtville Tribune

http://holtvilletribune.com/2012/03/09/circus-imagination-brings-big-top-with-big-thoughts-to-fair/

“Parents state being more than pleased with the idea of some face-to-face fun that regenerates the notion of educational and safe enjoyment away from screens and remote controls.,”

“Aiming to maximize their full creative potential by strengthening their confidences, the major triumph of Circus Imagination is still the fact that it does not end when the show is over.”
“Its inspiration to play outside and use your inventiveness is taken home by every child.”

Los Banos Enterprise

http://www.losbanosenterprise.com/2014/04/25/219869/fair-features-exciting-group-of.html

Circus Imagination will engage the imagination and creativity of children. Prior to each show the Circus Imagination ringmaster tours the fairgrounds and invites children to participate. Colorful costumes and child-friendly direction is given in each act. The 10-act program features a variety of circus acts from Tina the Tightrope Walker who climbs a make-believe ladder 100 feet in the air to Zazelle the Human Cannonball. No skill or talent is required and the experience leaves children with a strong sense of creativity and resourcefulness.

Aspoa.org

http://www.aspoa.org/News/35586~274064

how about visiting Circus Imagination, where children become instant stars by being selected from the audience, put in costume, and then performing in a spontaneous circus for the crowd. .

Californian.com

http://archive.thecalifornian.com/article/20090813/NEWS01/908130309/It-s-circus-Monterey-County-Fair

Hayley McGilvery, 7, of Morgan Hill gets to be part of the performance at the Circus Imagination at the Monterey County Fair on Wednesday afternoon. The circus, which has been around for 25 years, lets children be part of the show as the ringmaster puts them through a series of make-believe acts.

Santa Cruz County Fair

http://issuu.com/nmcdigital/docs/issuu-scf

Wrapping learning and positive growth in fun.

“ No resource person or any assembly has been as outstanding as Circus Imagination, several of our students are now selling tickets for their own backyard circuses. In education, success is often measured by emulation.” quote from a Santa Cruz County School Principal.

IV Press Online

http://articles.ivpressonline.com/2012-03-10/costumes_31144368

The idea of the circus is to get children away from video games and have them play with their imagination to help them get more creative.

Sacramento Today

http://www.sacramentotoday.net/news/templates/community.asp?articleid=1676&zoneid=1

Kids can join the circus using their imagination with props and costumes that are provided. The Ringmaster guides them through a fantasy adventure and before they know it, they have created their own world – something they can take home with them for many hours of backyard adventures.

The City of El Cerrito

https://ca-elcerrito.civicplus.com/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/1411

Circus Imagination presents their popular audience-participation animal-free circus shows under the Big Top.

Nevada County Fair

http://nevadacountyfair.com/tag/special-contests/ 

“How about visiting Circus Imagination, where children become instant stars by being selected from the audience, put in costume, and then performing in a spontaneous circus for the crowd.”

Nevada County Italian Festival

http://www.pharealty.com/blog/nevada-county-celebrates-italian-culture-and-tradition.html

A must-see for all children attending the festival is the participation-based circus performances of Circus Imagination. With a variety of pre-existing circus acts including Tight Rope Walking, and Human Canon Balls, the performers of Circus Imagination will also recruit children from the audience to join them on stage. Children of all ages can dress up as lions, safari explorers, and (of course) clowns and become part of the main attraction while performing in skits and other shows.

Firstpost.com

http://www.firstpost.com/topic/place/stockton-ca-hula-hoop-tina-video-LMfnm6ci6ZU-89497-8.html

“Tina the Tightrope walker just got a new skill, she hula hoops on the Circus Imagination tightrope! Such a talented little girl!” (Click to Watch the video!)

Google + review from Chico, CA

https://plus.google.com/105142595364972619333/reviews

“Had a hassle free experience with better than quoted pricing and a superb product delivered ahead of schedule. All the things you look for in a company. Thanks from Circus Imagination”

“Big Top” With “Big Thoughts” at the Fair

Calistoga, CA: Hello everybody! Circus Imagination is currently at home, giving the lions a rest and re-painting the circus train until our next event at Yuma County Fair (AZ) from April 3rd (Tue) to April 8th (Sun)!

We have recently signed up for this new google service called GOOGLE ALERTS. It is pretty cool, you give them a term to search and they will inform you every time that term gets mentioned on the internet! Yes, the whole internet! With that we found another article published on the Circus at our stay at Imperial Valley last week, here it is:

 

Circus Imagination Brings “Big Top” With “Big Thoughts” To Fair

By Chris Furguson

Visitors to the 2012 California Mid-Winter Fair & Fiesta may meet a young man in a ringmaster outfit as soon as they enter the fairgounds.
The ringmaster, Caton Hegwer, is looking for children to be part of one of the new  daily attractions to the 2012 California Mid-Winter Fair & Fiesta, the “Circus Imagination.”
Circus Imagination, which Hegwer runs with his wife Carolina, is a traveling children’s circus act the encourages the participants to use their imaginations.
“Parents state being more than pleased with the idea of some face-to-face fun that regenerates the notion of educational and safe enjoyment away from screens and remote controls.,” said a release by the couple.  “Aiming to maximize their full creative potential by strengthening their confidences, the major triumph of Circus Imagination is still the fact that it does not end when the show is over.”
“Its inspiration to play outside and use your inventiveness is taken home by every child.”
Up to thirty kids may participate in the act, all featuring colorful costumes that fit over the kids’ regular clothes.  All the costumes are designed and by Carolina.
While the volunteers are dressing, Hegwer tells a story about his father, who went to a big circus and was inspired to create a circus in his backyard using some friends and some old Halloween costumes.
The 100% safe show also encourages the audience to participate by applause and vocalizing gasps, oohs and aahs.
Acts within the Circus Imagination include Tina the Tightrope Walker, Sandow The Strongman, Clarence the Clown, Marco the Lion Tamer and his Ferocious Animals, “Believe It Or Not,” The Butterfly Ballet, Champagne Sisters, Dead Eye McBang the cowboy or Calamity Oakley the cowgirl, The Amazing Animal Parade and Zazelle, The Human Cannonball.
All acts feature the children pretending to do circus acts, so safety isn’t a concern.
At the end of the show, Caton encourages the children who participated and the ones who watched to not watch television or play video games when bored.
“They waste your time and your brain,” added Hegwer.
DVDs of the show are available for participants and parents are encouraged to film their kids’ performances.
At the Circus Imagination is located near the North entrance behind the pony rides.  They perform throughout each day at various listed times

Imperial Valley Press Article

Imperial, CA: Good morning everybody! Take a look at this cute story the Imperial Valley Press ran on us today! There’s a video, pictures and an article on their website. It also got front page on the printed newspaper – right next to the air show! Hopefully all the local parents will read it and bring their little ones to play at the circus today at the California Mid-Winter Fair! Right after they watch the Blue Angels jets fly overhead!

I pasted the article underneath, but you can see the whole story on the IV Press website if you click here:

Circus Imagination brings smiles and creativity to the children of the Valley

By LAURA GONZALEZ Multimedia Producer

2:56 a.m. PST, March 10, 2012

 

Tina the tightrope walker started to climb the 100 feet in the air she needed to reach the rope. Once she got to the top, the music started and she hesitated to take the first step.

“Here she comes, one foot and now the next foot,” said the circus master, giving her the confidence she needed to walk across the rope.

Slowly she made it to the end. The crowd was cheering and clapping.

Tina is 3 years old. Her real name is Siuleth Torres and she was able to do the dangerous trick by using her imagination.

That’s what the California Mid-Winter Fair & Fiesta Circus Imagination act is all about.

In 1994 Caton Raintree-Hegwer’s father and a friend had an idea to create a circus where children from the audience were the performers of the show.

Raintree-Hegwer grew up traveling with the circus and helping his father put on the show.

“Because I was raised in the circus, I have been in every single act in the circus at one point or another,” Raintree-Hegwer said.

After his father retired, Raintree-Hegwer took on the family business and since then has been traveling with his wife, who helps make the costumes and dresses up the children just as his mother did before them.

For 25 years the family has seen multiple generations of families enjoy the show.

“It’s been really fascinating to watch families grow up throughout the years being in the circus and then bringing their kids eventually,” said Raintree-Hegwer.

They are based in Sacramento but travel along the West Coast to participate in fairs and private parties.

Their normal working season starts in March and ends in November. When they are not out on the road, they are creating new costumes and characters for the show.

“We try to fix them up and make new ones every few years,” he said.

The idea of the circus is to get children away from video games and have them play with their imagination to help them get more creative.

Raintree-Hegwer said that children are special because they have the resource of their imagination.

“I don’t know what happens, but as we get older, adults tend to lose that fascinating desire to go out, to create and to imagine,” he said.

To Raintree-Hegwer, there is no greater feeling than starting your day putting up a circus and making children happy.

“This is the best job that I’ve ever had and I don’t think I’ll ever quit it,” Raintree-Hegwer said. “It’s just too much fun.”

Multimedia Producer Laura Gonzalez can be reached at 760-337-3440 or lgonzalez@ivpressonline.com

Copyright © 2012, Imperial Valley Press

2012 Schedule

2012
Schedule: Circus
Imagination

WHEN

WHAT

WHERE

Circus

Production

Newsletter

March 2nd – Fri

March 11th – Sun

California Mid Winter Fair

Imperial, CA

Cir

April 3rd – Tue

April 8th – Sun

Yuma County Fair

Yuma, AZ

Cir

April 11th – Wed

April 15th – Sun

Maricopa County Fair

Phoenix, AZ

Pro

New

May 2nd – Wed

May 6th – Sun

Merced Spring Fair

Los Banos, CA

Cir

May 16th – Wed

May 20th – Sun

Chowchilla County Fair

Chowchilla, CA

Cir

May 24th – Thu

May 28th – Mon

Sacramento County Fair

Sacramento, CA

Cir

New

May 31st – Thu

June 3rd – Sun

Contra Costa County Fair

Antioch, CA

Cir

New

Pro

June 7th – Thu

June 10th – Sun

Colusa County Fair

Colusa,CA

Cir

Pro

June 30th – Sat

July 5th – Thu

Napa County Fair

Calistoga, CA

Pro

Main

July 4th – Wed

World One Festival

El Cerrito, CA

Cir

July 18th – Wed

July 22nd – Sun

Lassen County Fair

Susanville, CA

Cir

Pro

August 1st – Wed

August 5th – Sun

Yuba Sutter Fair

Yuba City, CA

Cir

Pro

August, 8th – Wed

August 12th – Sun

Napa Town & Country Fair

Napa, CA

Cir

August 17th – Fri

August 26th – Sun

Antelope Valley Fair

Lancaster, CA

Cir

August 29th – Wed

September 3rd – Mon

Monterey County Fair

Monterey, CA

Cir

New

Pro

September 6th – Thu

September 9th – Sun

Gold Country Fair

Auburn, CA

Cir

Pro

New

September 11th – Tue

September 16th – Sun

Santa Cruz County Fair

Santa Cruz, CA

Cir

September 20th – Thu

September 30th – Sun

San Joaquin County Fair

CLOSED ON MON/TUE/WED

Stockton, CA

Cir

Pro

October, 6th – Sat

October 14th – Sun

Southern California Fair

Perris, CA

Pro


 

2011 Retrospective

Circus Imagination had a busy year:

  • We set up our circus in 14 different cities in California – USA!
  • We performed 173 spectacles!
  • About 2440 children have “ran away” and joined the circus!
  • Around 10 thousand people sat down in our audience through the year!

Watch our Video Retrospective – click on the button – – >

 

Our biggest Thanks goes to all fairs who had Circus Imagination in their 2011 entertainment schedule! Below is a list:

 

Merced Spring Fair

Salinas Valley Fair

Chowchilla Madera Fair

SAC County Fair

San Joaquin County Fair

World One Festival

Lassen County Fair

Yuba Sutter Fair

Napa Town & Country Fair

Antelope Valley Fair

Monterey County Fair

Gold Country Fair

Santa Cruz Fair

San Benito County Fair

 

for more information about the circus:

read more in our BLOG https://circusimagination.wordpress.com

 

for booking info go our WEBSITE www.circusimagination.com

 

find us on FACEBOOK www.facebook.com/CircusImagination

 

find us on YouTube www.youtube.com/Circusimagination

 

USE YOUR IMAGINATION! IT’S FREE!

 

Stay tuned for the release of the 2012 Circus Imagination Schedule soon!