By DeSiree Fawn
Hailey, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV ) - There used to be tears of joy when the circus came to town, now its tears of frustration.
Many Wood River Valley residents were roaring with outrage last summer, after the City of Hailey allowed the Jordan World Circus to perform.
Now, Hailey is reviewing an application for the circus to come back.
Concerned citizens are speaking out against the travelling circus and the animal abuse they say comes with it.
At a packed city council meeting, concerned citizens of all ages made their cases. Why traveling animal circuses should not be allowed in town.
Ever since the Jordan World Circus came to Hailey last summer, The Elephant Student Project has been raising awareness on the mistreatment of animals in traveling circuses.
“I felt it went pretty good and felt we got more through to them than the last meeting,” said a member of the Elephant Student Project in Hailey.
Animal Defenders International presented a video that asserts the Jordan World Circus is no exception to animal abuse.
“We documented the use of the bull hook, which is a club-like device with a sharp end and a hook that has long been used to abuse elephants to get them to perform in circuses. And an electric shocking device they use routinely right before the elephants go on stage and sometimes even during performances to shock and poke and jab and hook the elephants,” said Matt Rossell, Animal Defenders International.
One item up for debate over the circus’s application is just a matter of logistics. This summer a majority of the rodeo grounds parking lot is being used for a construction project to build a new ice rink. The question isn’t just how are the animals being treated? It’s also, where are they going to put them?
A representative from the Jordan World Circus attended the Hailey City Council meeting via cell phone. She said she is not authorized to comment at this time.
The City of Ketchum already passed a ban on traveling animal circuses.
There are forthcoming votes from Bellevue and Blaine County to do the same.
As to whether or not the City of Hailey is going to allow the Jordan World Circus to return?
They are expected to make that decision in the next few weeks. Video.