Sparks Downie Article 5-14-1930
Good Evening Folks TODAY IS CIRCUS DAY. By C. A. Bergei Well today Is circus day. Neither rain nor floods, mount- tains, cliffs, declivities or other such things can stop a bird from attending the circus once he had been chewed by the circus bug. And every spring when the grass begins, to green, then comes a return of tne wound inflicted by the circus bug. The symptoms are itching feet, a sniffing for the scent of sawdust and a wiggling of the ears as they twitch trying to catch the blare ot the band. Doggone, I don't really think there is any virus that wUl wholly eradicate the circus bug's poison from a fellow's hide. But I/like it and today I am simply In my glory. Caurse as yet I have not attended the show but any time Charlie Sparks has a show he has one. And Andy Downie was no slouch of a showman. So with the Downie Show added to and augmented by Charlie Sparks ability there ought to be one swell .bit of entertainment on tap today. It's a lot of fun to watch Charlie Sparks in and about his show. Now I suppose I shouldn't write about Charlie this wa-y but take it from me that anybody who is in the pubic eye as much as a showman is, Ford City Clarion which Ford consecutive the again ently. s .ocal The to and owners ;hey are ought not to kick. And what I am going to say isn't really about Charlie at all except that he is on the business end ol it. I am going to write qbout Charlie's big cigar. Honest, I think the bird that wrote that song, "A Man From the South With a Big Cigar in His Mouth", had Charlie in mind as down south .they call him southerner and claim him for their own and he lias a cigar in hio mouth. And by the tilt of the cigar the show -folks know what kind of a humor Mr. Sparks is in. If the cigar is tilted at the normal angle the world is O. K. and things are moving smoothly but when that cigar gets tilted upward at a high pitch it's just too bad for those who want to ask favors. Gosh, I can remem'uer the first time I ever saw Charlie Sparks. It was one heck of a while ago and the old Steamer Nellie Hudson was running excursions on the Allegheny. One Sunday the old boat came steaming up the river and my uncle and I got on at Catfish. I was a callow youth' hardly drry behind the ears yet. Charlie was board and to think that he was one of a family that had a circus caused me to sniil around him to see if perchance he had an elephant, monkey, or perhaps a lion :;ecreted about his person. We got quite well acquainted on the boat but I didn't see Charlie again for a lot of years. Right now Kittanning is giving evidence to the world that ' wmlf* business here may not be as brisk as it might be, that nevertheless a good steady old town. Amusements follow money just as sure shooting and right now Hose Company No. 6 has a flock of rides doing business here; Downie Shows are here today, next week Harry Copping of ReynoldsviHe brings his carnival here and then the Robinson Circus is asking us to "Wait for us' 1 . Henry Robert brey, vile Stewart, Jackson; And just as I was writing this along comes a show fellow who me Andrew Downie is with the Downie Show. Good, I haven't seen him since back In 1910 down nt Pulaski, Term.,, when we closed season with the Buffalo Ranch Show. Downie and some other showmen came there and we sold 'em a lot of band wagons, etc. that seems a long time ago but haven't met Mr. Downie since. The show business is a great and the democracy, the good fellov.- ship and the general spirit of raderie that goes with it is something that is not to be found anywhere else and so onco bitten by the circus bug it is hard to recover from the effects of the wounds.