The Makings Of A Great Circus

This is a sponsored post via US Family Guide.

I have very clear memories of my lifetime visits to the circus. Once as a child, my father's employer sent us to see Ringling Bros and I our seats were directly underneath the motorcycle tightrope rider. Our small Iowa town used to have a real-life traveling circus set up the striped big top tents in an open field each summer. We took B as a baby to another Ringling Bros circus that was way too loud for any of us to enjoy. And we all went a couple years ago to a Shrine Circus, which was great because we got to meet all the clowns, but not great because the tigers wouldn't perform and the stunt performer cut his act in half after almost falling from the ceiling.

My circus experiences have been a roller coaster ride, but the circus is a childhood rite of passage I want my children to remember, too. I am glad to be able to report, after taking B & P to the Jordan World Circus, that is an experience I can recommend, and will take them to again. Here are the reasons it stood out to me as a worthwhile family outing...

The Costumes

My biggest pet peeve about the circus comes in the form of scantily-clad women. The performers usually are wearing minimal clothing and nude coverings. Spinning and hanging and tumbling in suggestive positions that make me as an adult uncomfortable, and always leave me  wanting to cover up my young boys' eyes or needing to explain why they shouldn't be seeing what they are seeing.

The Jordan World Circus acts were very tastefully prepared. The female performer costumes were flashy and form-fitting, but designed with pant legs and torsos that were appropriately covered. Even better, the acts were not all female.  Several of the acrobats and aerialists were men, without even their shirts hanging open.  The Spiderman aerialist was absolutely the most impressive performance of the night, and a role model for my boys who couldn't take their eyes off of him.

The Acts
The Jordan World Circus has done a great job offering a variety of circus acts that keep the audience entertained. There are standard performances like tigers jumping through fire, a motorcycle ball, and clowns, but also unique productions involving dancing camels and Chinese vase balancing. The troop of acrobatic jugglers was actually endearing. The finale, an elephant act, was one of the most adorable things I've ever seen.

Circus Elephants

The Suspense
Of course there is a degree of heart-pounding suspense to be expected when taking the family to the circus. It was remarkable to me on this occasion, because the stunt acts were performed invoked all the gasps and screams they should from the audience, while obviously being in control of everything they were doing. (Remember, my last circus experience had us gasping, but because the performer nearly killed himself). While my heart was in my throat much of the time, I can admit the skill it takes to walk outside of a spinning wheel is quite impressive!

Was there anything I didn't like? Not really.  It was a great show.  The only downside was my own poor planning.  I never remember that there are going to be loads of flashing toys, good-smelling food, and extra activities that my kids are going to ask to have and do. We tend not to buy extra things once we are inside an event on principle, but normally I have myself prepared with distractions or at least good excuses. Learn from my lack of planning, at the Jordan World Circus there are going to be opportunities to by snow cones and cotton candy, light swords and stuffed monkeys, elephant rides and tiger photographs. They cost extra. Bring money if that's something you want the kids to do.

Elephant Rides

If you live in the intermountain west, be sure to watch for the Jordan World Circus coming to your town soon, and take the kids for a fun family night of entertaining!

What is your favorite part of the circus?

Jordan World Circus Giveaway

Giveaway prize was provided in association with this sponsored post.

Great news for all my circus loving Utah readers! Jordan World Circus has provided me an extra family pass good for their upcoming event dates, and I'd like to give it away to one of you!

Please enter using the giveaway widget below, and good luck!

Also, don't forget, 
A Local Wander readers can get $10 off a family pass.
$10 OFF 'Family Pack' - ONLINE ONLY - 

Family Pack is good for 2 Adults + 3 Children (Ages 3 to 12 years)

Please Visit EventBrite to Select your location For Ticket Purchase.
 Discount Is Good for Utah Locations Only On Family Pack. 
Please Use Code "FamilyFun"
- See more at:

A Fairy Tale Ice Castle

This is a sponsored post via USFamilyGuide.
A complimentary item will be received, 
but you know the opinions are mine.

A friend recently asked me how I always know about the super cool things happening in our neighborhood.  The first thought that came to my mind was our different amounts of community interest and involvement.  I take advantage of every service our city has to offer and many many times they are not only amazing, but also free.

The second thought that came to mind was this blog.  A Local Wander is all about exploring close to home or off the beaten tourist path. It's how I provide great opportunities for my family and how I can share them with all of you.  Every once in awhile an opportunity comes along that boils over even my cool-ness scale.  That's what I'm sharing with you today!

If you live in New Hampshire, Minnesota, Utah, or Alberta, you have got to go explore in one of these larger-than-life frozen architectural wonders!  Because I want you to be as excited as me, let me share the exact description from the Ice Castle website...

Amazing ice features including archways, tunnels, slot canyons, ice slide, caverns,
 glacial waterfalls and a frozen throne. Kids and families squeezing, squishing, sliding, stomping and crawling through parts of the stunning Narnia Like display. Natural frozen ice tones during the day; colorful LED-lit ice set to music at night. Built by hand and made from more than 20,000,000 pounds of ice, the Ice Castles are READY to be explored!

Doesn't it sound amazing?!? Our family went last year and loved it! Each castle is an acre in size and will only last as long as the weather stays cold.  Here in Utah that should be March, but you'll want to go as soon as possible to make sure you don't miss out!

I'm taking my family again in a few weeks and will share photos and stories about this year's visit, but don't wait for that.  Click here to read about our visit from last year. And then check out the information for the Ice Castle near you...

Attending in Utah? Click here for more details.

My readers get to save on admission! 
at all 4 locations.

 If you live in driving distance of one of these 4 castles, will you tag A Local Wander in a picture while you're there? I'd love to see how much fun you're having!