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Flip, Fly and Focus on Acro!

Editor’s Note:
This post was written by summer Camp Communications Associate Sojourn Gudorf Johnston

Our second session of the summer was a 2-week All Levels Circus Camp. Campers participated and shared in Smirkus Camp fun this week and are looking forward to one more week in the session. During the second week, the campers and coaches will begin working on their end of session show.

Speaking of shows… the campers had the delight of watching the dress rehearsal of 2022 Big Top Tour: On The Road Again. It was brilliant and inspiring to observe the outcome of training and hard work. It also created motivation and excitement for Smirkus Camp’s end of session show next week.

In addition to their daily rotations of acro, juggling, aerials and clowning, campers had exciting ‘choice times’ in the afternoons: human pyramids, juggling with non-juggling tools (the campers were very creative in their choices) including mannequin arms), clown-acro, clown-band (creating music with clowning props), and three-person trapeze.

There were also some less physical activity choice time activities to allow the campers’ bodies to rest and recover, including an art appreciation walk, water spitting, cat walks (yes, with aerial coach Sarah’s cat), speed shoe tying, and more. Throughout the week, campers enjoyed different activities such as a ‘mudslide’, movie night in the Mama Mia circus tent, and the camper talent show. Camp celebrated Pride Day in honor of the anniversary of Stonewall and the first Pride Parades.

This week’s blog skill spotlight was Acro. Acrobatics date back to at least 2000 BC. There are pictographs of acrobatic dancers performing backbends found at ancient sites. The term “Acro” stems from Greek and translates to “to walk on tiptoe” and “to climb up”. Rope walking also originated in Greece. Fast forward to May, 2022, Ariana Wunderle (9 time Smirkus trouper!) broke the Guinness World Record by walk a 6-foot high rope, 52 times (639ft total) in
4-inch high heels.

Advice from camp’s Acro Coaches:
Always say yes to yourself and not be scared off because an idea is too weird.” -Charles
If you have a coach that you can trust and that will push you, you really can do things you didn’t know you can do.” -Todd
As a coach, teach their heart before you teach their body.” – Patrick

You can find additional stories and advice in the full interviews with the Acro Coaches on Instagram @circussmirkus.