By Alan Sorensen
Lions and tigers and bears and elephants, horses, aerialists, jugglers and clowns
The Shrine Circus is coming to town July 1, sponsored by the North Central Montana Shrine Club. The Thursday afternoon and evening shows will be at 2 and 7 p.m. at the Hill County Fairgrounds.
The Jordan World Circus shows will be in the grandstands arena, weather permitting. It will move into the Bigger Better Barn in the event of inclement weather.
The cost is $2 per child for advanced tickets and $2.50 at the gate. Adults are $7 advanced and $7.50 at the gate.
The proceeds from this go to assist with travel for families whose children are being treated at Shriners Childrens Hospital in Spokane, Shriner Noel Davidson said.
The Shriners Childrens Hospital in Spokane is one of the Shriners 19 orthopedic hospitals in North America. The Shriners also fund three Shriners Burns Institutes. The first Shriners Hospital was built in Shreveport, La. in 1922.
Their operational expenses exceed $1.5 million per day, and this is supported without government assistance, Davidson said. This is the largest private benevolent project on the face of the Earth.
More than 530,000 crippled children have been helped at the 22 hospitals over the years. About 21,000 children are admitted to the hospitals annually and another 210,000 receive outpatient or outreach clinic attention each year.
Were always looking for patients, Davidson said, and anyone up to 18 is eligible. Sixteen patients have been sent from Havre so far in 1999.
Shrine membership in the United States, Mexico and Canada is approximately 637,000 today.
In order to become a member of the Shrine, Davidson said, an applicant must first be a member in good standing of the Masonic Order and have completed its preliminary degrees.
Free tickets to the Shrine Circus are available through members of the Shrine or from many participating local merchants, including Hank Tweetens Auto Body, Tire-Rama, Northern Insurance, and Normans Ranch and Sportswear.
For mail service call Barb Van Koten at 265-9074 or Marilyn Hoppe 265-4708.
Everyone is encouraged to come out and enjoy the fun of a lifetime at the Shrine Circus, Thursday, July 1, at the Hill County Fairgrounds.
If you know of a child in need, contact a local Shriner, Davidson said.