YESTERDAY'S TOWNS

HOWDY, MY NAME IS BILL STRONG, I'LL BE YOUR "24 HOUR MAN", ROUTING YOU INTO THE PAST TO SEE WHAT THE CIRCUS WAS IN DAYS GONE BY. IF YOU'RE LIKE ME, AND MISS WHAT IT USED TO BE, THEN COME ON ALONG AS WE GO DOWN THE ROAD FOLLOWING THE ARROWS BACKWARDS, TO "YESTERDAY'S TOWNS"! IF YOU HAVE CIRCUS RELATED PICTURES YOU WOULD LIKE POSTED, SEND THEM TO,,,,yesterday1@verizon.net,,,,AND WE WILL TRY TO FIT THEM IN. "24 HOUR MAN" WILL HAVE THE FINAL DECISION ON POSTING.

My Photo
Name:
Location: GIBSONTON, FLORIDA, United States

Three years at CWM made me a real traditionalist, and I keep remembering Bob Parkinson saying, "I want the people to see what the circus used to be, not what it is today. That's what this site is about!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

CIRCUS AMERICA: PROLOGUE

This project was scrapped a hundred times, at first, because of the strange mixture of pictures on each page I began cutting pictures from the pages to use individually, this involved lots of erasing & cloning in the empty spots,(in front of the Riding Tiger is a good example). Then I decided to just print each page, but there weren't enough pictures so I started through the computer files, and finally through old programs in the store room. You'll find some strange combinations on some of the posts but if I did each number alone it would have doubled the number of posts, I'm not even sure now that it will all fit on the page. I don't even want to think how many hours were involved, sort of like the show itself ready, at any rate I hope you enjoy Circus America!!!!
24 HOUR MAN

NOTE: The good thing about having the building involved in producing the show was the unprecedented cooperation, before we started setting in, Operations Manager, John Gentry called all the dept. heads together & introduced me, he told them to give me anything I needed and if they didn't have it, get it!

Most of the prop crew were with me the whole three weeks but many came & went, if a good hand came through with a few days off I would put him to work until he had to move on to wherever he was going, I couldn't even begin to remember them all.
There were over 350 tie offs in the ceiling & most of them were done with 2 sign trucks with 80'high telescoping booms, one had a bucket but the other only a ladder fastened to the side. I was pretty pressed for time because at times we had to stop & clear the floor for Capital Bullets Basketball games, I remember one aerialist coming to me drop line in hand, ready to help, when those trucks came in and raised their booms he came back and said, "let me know if you need anything hung from the catwalk.
As I'll explain later, the ceiling of the bldg. fluctuated 18" up & down, this drove the riggers nuts, especially ones sitting on the top rung of the ladder, one rigger screamed at the operator so much for "moving" the boom I finally told him to come down & I would finish it myself. As I was about half way up he started shaking the ladder, I told him to stop & he said see what I mean, when I got to the top I hollered down, "now shake it". I also started rocking the boom back & forth, it scared the hell out of me but I wasn't going to let him know. Just looking down the boom and seeing how much it bent scared me. I was so thankful when Cookie & Pepe Arturo showed up because those two guys would go any where.

9 Comments:

Anonymous fatima said...

Congratulations 24-hr man....this has to be the biggest collection of pictures of some of our greatest performers....you must have put many hours on this one....good job you don't get paid by the hour...

5/04/2007 9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HE.... WILL.... GET.... HIS...
REWARD....YOU...KNOW..... WERE....
FOR...SURE....!!!!!!!

5/04/2007 12:27 PM  
Anonymous NINETTE said...

Bill' those pictures put together are are just outstanding what a great job you are doing, not only that we HAVE THE PLEASURE OF LOOKING AT THEM BUT TO HAVE SO MOUCH OF HISTORY INLUDE, 'FANTASTIQUE.

5/04/2007 12:42 PM  
Anonymous Mike Naughton, Yankee Doodle Circus said...

Bill, how did they print this program so fast? Were they the acts' publicity photos or were the photos shot during the actual performance?

5/05/2007 11:00 AM  
Blogger 24-HOUR-MAN said...

Mike Crowley, who was General Manager of the Capital Centre, & Production Supervisor flew into Kansas City to do the photos himself, later he flew into Springfield piloting a private plane, picked us up & we flew to New Orleans to the Tom Packs Show to photograph the acts there that were contracted for Circus America.

5/05/2007 12:03 PM  
Blogger 24-HOUR-MAN said...

I have to brag a little, we stayed in a plush hotel in the French Quarter, & the greatest breakfast I ever had, Sunday morning, outdoors at The Court of Two Sisters, the courtyard was still wet from being hosed down, and we had Eggs Benedict and a bottle of white wine. "It don't get no better than that".

5/05/2007 12:12 PM  
Blogger Mike Naughton said...

Thank you, I've been wondering about that for YEARS, I gotta get a life.

5/05/2007 1:14 PM  
Blogger 24-HOUR-MAN said...

Here's a story regarding the KC photo shoot, Mike Crowley posted a notice scheduling sessions for each act, one who was staying at a trailer park was not happy with their early call so they marked out the time & wrote, "schedule at a more convenient time". When Mike read it he walked over to Paul & asked, "have you issued that act a contract yet?", Paul said no, & Mike replied, "well don't bother"!!!!

5/05/2007 4:18 PM  
Blogger 24-HOUR-MAN said...

This story came from Mike Crowley, so I'm telling it like I heard it. One of the acts stopped by Capital Centre and met with him to tell all the reasons they should not be in a display. When they were finished Mike said, "I take it you are not very happy", and they stated that was true. Mike reached over, opened his intercom, and said to his secretary, "would you bring Mr.???'s contract in here so I can tear it up, I don't want any unhappy performers in my show". Needless to say, there was considerable back-peddling!

5/08/2007 10:44 AM  

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