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Shrine Circus Information

The Shrine Circus is a circus performance founded in 1906 in the US. The circus show travels about 120 cities across the US, and a splinter group travels to some 40 cities in Canada. It traces its roots to the former Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, now called the Shriners International.

The first performance was in Detroit, Michigan, at the Moslem Shrine Center. It was initially designed to be a one-ring affair but had grown to three rings by 1925. Yearly the circus travels to many cities across the US and Canada. No single fair matches the size of crowd the circus attracts in Detroit.

In 1996, the Shrine Circus continued for 17 consecutive days with some 40 performances. It is, without a doubt, one of the oldest Shrine Circus and the most attended. The term ‘Shrine Circus’ is prefaced by the name of the host shrine in the given location. Some of the notable circus stars to have made an appearance in the Shrine Circuses include Emmett Kelly, Zacchini brothers, the Flying Wallendas, Clyde Beatty, and the Flying Concellos.

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