For 64 consecutive years, the Melha Shrine Circus has been a fun way to help support the many activities of the Shriners in our communities and promote awareness of the Shriners Hospital for Children in Springfield.

We Shriners think of ourselves as a family with shared goals and values, one of the most important being children. With that in mind, we have decided to discontinue the circus and focus on other fund-raising activities.

Our decision is based on several factors, including a review of circus data from the past few years. Circuses around the country, including our own, have experienced a marked decrease in attendance as families have turned to alternate forms of entertainment.

We did not make this decision lightly, and it is bittersweet. Circuses have been an iconic form of family entertainment for generations, and we are incredibly proud of what we've accomplished. However, we want to support Shriners Hospital in the best ways we can, and are excited to explore other arenas.

To all the families, individuals, businesses and media outlets who've been coming to the circus and helping support our goals in other ways—Thank you...and stay tuned for other events by liking our Melha Shriners Facebook page.