a 48 hour period in Mango Grove

Ever wonder how things come together.  Sometimes i’m more interested in the backstory much more interesting.   Unusual, perhaps.  We were doing the Circus theme. for the Great American Raft Race.  Who suggested it.  I heard a lot of nay-sayers yet I thought it was brilliant.  Who ever you are,  loved your idea.  It must have been in the air.  Only a few months ago the post office issued Circus stamps.   The fact that the circus saw it’s demise on May 21 of this year can’t have been a coincidence?  Also the fact that only last year i visited the Circus Museum in Sarasota. Needless to say I believe in serendipity.

Cast of a thousand, well, ok a few less than a thousand

Mango Grove embraced the theme. We won the best performance but did you all really see our effort. Our two trophy well deserved.

Best Performance Trophy Now living with our artist who painted the tiger

The Run aground trophy made of the steering mechanism from the Mayor/City float that went aground first.

Only the day before I put an SOS out for a unicycle, within an hour there came one riding by the Lake Worth Art Guild gallery window.  I jumped up and hailed him down. W’d you know he’s been riding since he was 8 years old and lives in Mango Grove.   The day before Sunday at the beach sharing stories and questioning, what all does a circus have, besides Elephants, well of course, a tight rope walker.  We look across from Benny’s and there is a guy strapping his high wire act onto two Palm Trees.  I’m on it.  Yes he will perform in Bryant Park for us.

The hard part for me was making what I felt was plausible happen.

Our Ring Leader, Master of Ceremony and current Pres. of Mango Grove

I had the vision,  but how could I do it?  Andy Amaroso to the rescue, he had the  spinners right up front, within reach.  Yes I wanted a balloon but I settled for tea cups spinning in the air.

ah Leonard Bryant captured my tea cups spinning

A thought not mine another  Grovite  said, ” i have pink seersucker pants”, we proceeded to paint his baseball cap white.  Now for an industrial broom that you could appreciate from afar*..  Dropping off my number one collaborator/artist extraordinaire  Claudia from Parrot Cove,  we pass someone moving and there was this beautiful oversized mop. (dumpster diving) and i still had some  tinsel from years ago.  All this happened in a 48 hour period.  IT WAS MEANT TO BE.

The other note worthy part of this coming together of ideas and talent. New residents to Mango Grove with two talented daughters and boundless enthusiasm.  I entrusted the 15-year-old to create a circus wagon.  What I expected was one thing what I got was over the top.  She is a student a Dryfoos and did I mention only 15.

photo by Leonard Bryant

Our Bearded Lady was difficult.     I asked up to 9 men with full beards to consider  crossdressing lots of maybe.  Then I spotted this  gorgeous man with a red beard tall  large and good looking ,  better than the rest.       The other well deserved award  is seen below.   Commissioner Maxwell on the spot to give a helping hand.  It was sad as they were all dressed to the gills.

it was terribly hot


*anytime you do a performance  or parade or Circus everything has to be exaggerated so it can be appreciated from afar.  I was told  this by artist Fred Hunt RIP who appeared in Cecil B. DeMill’s “The Greatest Show on Earth” as an extra.   He was a student at the Ringling School of Art in its heyday.

ps  not all photos are mine if i knew  the shooter I gave credit .  Please visit these photographers they have some awesome documentation of this circus parade actually the entire 16th annual Great American Raft Race .  Wes Blackman also has video, Tom Johnson,  Leonard Bryant and Shawn Moss.  From the imbedded photographer moi my limited access as i was in the parade, favorite shots .


So thanks all for the Best Performance trophy

About Lake Worth Florida by the moment the source of inspiration

A former Unite Press International photographer. Spent 9 years with Cruise Ship Photos of London. Moved to Lake Worth from Coconut Grove, with artist husband Fred Hunt. Never leaves the house without a camera. Writes another blog "One Ear Society" dealing with the ins and outs of the art world. Closed her Art Gallery in Coconut Grove after 17 years to relocate in Lake Worth.
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