Now that Orange City has lifted its ban on outdoor gatherings, a no-animals circus may bring its show to town.
The traveling show known as Cirque Italia has requested permission to set up its tent and draw crowds with a dazzling array of acrobats, dancers, clowns and a look back to a simpler era.
The troupe promises spectators will be socially distanced to head off the spread of the coronavirus.
“Our show is brand-new this year. It’s ’50s-themed, with poodle skirts, rock ’n’ roll and classic cars,” Cirque Italia spokeswoman Sarah Kessler told The Beacon.
Cirque Italia was established by Manuel Rebecchi, whose family participated In circuses in Europe, Kessler said.
“He grew up with that live circus performance,” Kessler said.
With his background and his idea of blending colors, lights, water sprays and other effects to enhance the work of the human performers, Rebecchi formed Cirque Italia in Sarasota in 2012.
“A 30,000-gallon tank is digitally programmed with the colors, and it’s a stunning display. These shows are for all ages,” Kessler said.
Orange City Manager Dale Arrington said she is still reviewing Cirque Italia’s application for a special-events permit. Kessler, too, said the request is still pending, and the location has not been finalized.
The application filed in late December identifies the Fancy Fruit and Produce property, located at 911 S. Volusia Ave., as the site for the big tent and the performances. The tent would be erected in a grassy parcel next to the store.
That application originally sought the dates of Jan. 28-31 for Cirque Italia’s Orange City run, but Kessler said the revised dates are now Feb. 25-28.
In keeping with ongoing concerns about public health and safety, Kessler said, Cirque Italia will do its part to halt the spread of the virus.
“We socially distance. We don’t allow groups larger than eight,” she noted. “We have hand-sanitizing stations inside the tent.”
That is not all.
The application for a special-event permit promises additional measures, including:
“Staff members are required to wipe down all surfaces throughout the tent prior, during, and after every show in 30 minute intervals,” the document reads.
The size of the audience for each performance will be limited, as well. While the show’s normal capacity is 998, attendance will be limited to 400 per show, the application states.
Moreover, for the safety of performers and circus fans, Cirque Italia will not offer face painting or photos of spectators with the artists.
Also, Cirque Italia requires anyone 3 years of age or older to wear a mask to enter the tent.
If the application is approved, the show schedule for Orange City is:
— Thursday, Feb. 25 — 7:30 p.m.
— Friday, Feb. 26 — 7:30 p.m.
— Saturday, Feb. 27 — 1:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m.
— Sunday, Feb. 28 — 1:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Kessler said Cirque Italia may add other showtimes, “as needed.”
Ticket prices range from $10 to $50. For more information about purchasing tickets, visit www.cirqueitalia.com.