June 2, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

I Flipped for Flip Circus

Jugglers and magicians and clowns, oh my! These entertainers and so many more can be found at each Flip Circus show. Flip Circus is a traveling circus that typically stays in one area for about two to three weeks. To start its 2022 tour, the circus group set up a massive tent right outside the Garden State Plaza Mall. My wife and I went on March 21, catching its last presentation day in Paramus.

As we pulled into the mall’s parking lot, we saw the great circus tent in the distance, bringing to mind a giant candy cane with its red-and-white striped design. Lights dangled from the ropes that held the tent in its place, and at its top, an American flag waved in the wind. The entrance line was long, taking us about 15 minutes before it was our turn to enter.

Once inside, our tickets were scanned, and we were asked by a photographer if we wanted our picture taken. We happily obliged, taking a fun picture by a large Flip Circus sign. The photographer informed us that the picture could be purchased for $25 during the intermission, but we ultimately decided to take our own picture later on instead. From there, we headed toward our seats, passing several concession stands selling popcorn, snacks and drinks.

Walking into the main show area, I was blinded by the lights on the circus stage that shone on our faces. After several steps, however, the light cleared, and I regained my vision. The room was filled with bleachers surrounding the center ring and was covered in a foggy haze, made clear by dozens of spotlights shining on the center ring. After a few minutes, the conductor came on stage and announced the show’s beginning.

Kicking off the event was a juggler who juggled bowling pins, rings and hats, managing to throw 12 rings in the air, catch each one, and place them all around his neck. He also threw hats into the crowd, but before we could catch them, the hats surprisingly boomeranged right back onto his head. Up next was a flying dancer who swung around the entire circus while holding onto a cord.

A strong man displayed his prowess by doing a full handstand on two pegs. At one point, he was able to take one of his hands off one peg, supporting his entire body on just the other peg. Next, he took four bricks, stacked them up on the pegs, and managed to balance himself on the bricks without them toppling over. In the end, he allowed all of the bricks to fall, but he caught himself on the pegs in the nick of time.

In between each act, a clown named Steve performed different pantomimes that had me rolling on the floor in laughter. Once, he held a rope which he pretended was a leash to a dog that he was chasing. Sometimes he involved the audience in his antics, as in the case when he had people hold onto a string as he moved away from them. He kept on walking until the audience members couldn’t hold on any longer. The string would then go flying, unexpectedly and comically, smacking Steve in the back of the head. At one point, a trapeze artist began doing some stunts. Not surprisingly, Steve got caught in the middle of the act, ending up dangling by the trapeze artist’s legs in the air. To our amazement, Steve turned out to be pretty coordinated and succeeded in performing some agile trapeze stunts, too.

During the intermission, kids had the opportunity to play on the center ring floor where two giant polar and panda bear costumed individuals were available to pose for pictures.

Following the intermission, a quick magic show took place. Tricks included a levitating table and a person escaping from a locked box. The next bit involved audience participation in which a dozen people were selected to lie on the floor, side by side. Several parkour athletes, dubbed the Chicago AllStars, jumped over all of the people in one giant leap!

The final act featuring The Globe of Death was my favorite! At first, two motorcyclists entered a caged sphere and began riding around, even performing loops. It was impressive to see their coordination in spite of the fast pace at which they drove and the very close proximity. Then, a third rider joined the sphere. Somehow, the three of them began flipping around and doing similar stunts, despite there being even less space. To my utter disbelief, a fourth cyclist entered the ball, and the four of them began riding around together doing similar tricks. I was stupefied, having no clue how they avoided colliding into each other. Following that final feat, the entire circus cast came out for a standing ovation, receiving a well-deserved thunderous applause from the awed and appreciative audience.

Currently, Flip Circus is performing in Nanuet, New York through May 16, followed by performances in Long Island and Edison, New Jersey. You can visit its website for its full summer tour. This past Pesach in Yonkers, special shows were held featuring an all-male cast. The events were hosted by Cousin Nachum the Clown with special guest singer, Nachas.

When I messaged the support team on Facebook inquiring if the ensemble would be returning next year, a customer service representative messaged me: “This is our first year; we are not sure what our 2023 calendar will be, but we’d love to be back.” I certainly hope so, too.

Overall: I would rate the experience a 7 out of 10. I loved seeing the Flip Circus show and was astonished by the talented cast. The atmosphere was great, with the audience captivated by the entire show. For a relatively inexpensive show, my wife and I had an amazing time. It was a very family-friendly show that I would highly recommend checking out next time the troupe arrives in your neighborhood.


Zachary Greenberg is a health and benefits consultant analyst at Mercer as well as the TABC track coach. He interviewed 14x Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Champion, Joey Chestnut and the full interview can be found on his YouTube channel. Zachary recently watched “A Nightmare on Elm Street” (1984) for the first time and consequently did not sleep for the following two nights.

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