Goal SMASHED! Next: Fix Leaks!

YOU'VE HELPED US RAISE $17,904 FOR BUILDING UP
Well on Our Way to Phase 2: Fixing That Leaky Roof


Great BUILDING UP news: Last Saturday, your donations helped us meet the full $7,500 matching challenge, and then some!

We've raised a total of $17,904 together so far - that's 51% of our overall goal of $35,000!

THANK YOU to all the $5 Friday Founders so far. You've helped us meet our match and pass our first goal of $15,000. Thank you for making it possible for Circus Center to improve our students' everyday training and performing experience with new mats and crash pads, and take our ability to produce circus shows in the gym to the next level with permanent show lights.

Moreover, your generosity means we have an almost $3,000 head start on our next goal: $10,000 for ROOF REPAIRS.

Two years ago, we got a grant from the City that funded a first round of vital roof fixes, but the heavy rain last winter showed us that more repairs are needed. Our building is almost 90 years old, and we need to address significant leaks in the men's bathroom, near the trampoline, in the bleachers, and by the theater door into the alley.

It's hard to imagine now with summer on the way, but come winter, the storms are going to come back, and we need to make those repairs while the sun is still out. There's no way around it: being able to make targeted roof repairs now is key to keeping our building safe this winter.

We can't have people in a building that leaks. Not students training, not performers, $5 Friday attendees, or our show audiences. It's bad for you, our equipment, and your Circus Center experience. We need to take care of our building. It takes care of us every day.

Let's stay safe and dry this winter. Thanks to your generosity over the weekend, we're already almost 30% to our $10,000 goal for these roof repairs. Help us raise the $7,098 we need to fix those leaks now with a gift today.

Keep an eye on our blog for updates on the campaign, including when we're installing the gym's new mats and lights. And don't forget your gifts come with fun donor swag - including memberships for the first year of $5 Friday!

Thank you, and let's stay dry!

BUILDING UP to Something Great This Spring

TAKE CARE OF OUR HOME & BUILD OUR COMMUNITY
Be a Founder of a New Friday Night Circus Series

Last Saturday, we launched BUILDING UP, a campaign to raise $35,000 to start $5 Friday, a new, regular open house-style community circus event series. This campaign will help us take care of our building, improve our students' everyday training and performing experience, and create fun, low-cost opportunities for our broader community to discover the joys of circus arts. Please join our campaign - and when you give now through 5/20, your donation will be matched 1:1 up to $7,500!

What's this campaign about?

The full details about $5 Friday and our campaign goals are detailed here, but suffice to say: we're going to make needed building fixes and equipment purchases to create a regular series of fun, low-barrier events where our greater community can try a variety of circus arts easily - and see our students perform (especially on San Francisco's only flying trapeze)!

We have three major funding goals, including roof repairs and revamping the lobby, but we're very excited about the first one:

  • $15,000 to invest in the Main Gym as a training and performance space by replacing the floor mats, re-stuffing the crash pads, and installing permanent show lighting.
These upgrades will improve everyday training and make our $5 Friday performances (and other shows) both easier to produce and higher quality for YOU.

Even more exciting, this week only (now through May 20th), a squad of donors has pledged to match your contributions 1:1 up to $7,500. That means we are almost halfway to this first goal already - and every gift today will get us closer!

So please, give to support BUILDING UP: together we can take care of our home, build a stronger circus arts community, and create opportunities for a new generation to experience the joys of circus arts. Plus, there's some fun donor swag.

Please join our campaign today. Thank you!

Curious about how the New Net & Equipment campaign and SHOW LOVE impacted Circus Center? Short answer: tremendously!

Here are our blog updates: 
Net Campaign Part 1, Part 2
SHOW LOVE Part 1

Remember, our dollar-for-dollar challenge is active NOW through May 20! Help us claim the full $7,500 matching gift by making your contribution right now!

PACK SALE! Plus, Important Policy Adjustments for Summer

As part of our plan to suspend the full session enrollment option for this summer, we are running a sale on Class Packs!

  Tier A Tier B Tier C
5-Pack $115 $105 $200 $185 $210 $195
10-Pack $220 $200 $350 $320 $350 $320

Offer good now through Sunday, May 14. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE

Also, we are making two temporary adjustments to our policies to make sure that you are able to get the value you expect from training at Circus Center.
  1. Expiration Dates: You want to be able to book your spot in your favorite class all the way through the summer, right? But single drop-ins ordinarily expire after one month, and 5-Packs after three months, which wouldn’t get you all the way to September 3. So starting today, all single drop-ins and 5-Packs expire either on September 4 or their original expiration date, whichever is longer.
  2. Unused Packs Credited Toward Fall Session Enrollment: Let’s say you buy a couple of 10-Packs, use most of them over the summer, but come fall, you want to go back to full session enrollment. You don’t want those leftover drop-in credits to go to waste. So one time only, in advance of the fall session enrollment period, you can request the value of any unused credits be applied toward the cost of fall session enrollment.
Finally, here is the Summer 2017 Schedule! You can use this to help you figure out your purchases. Open registration will begin at 10:00 am on Tuesday, May 9. No need to call or email us to register – you can manage everything online through Circus Center’s MindBody platform.

Happy training!

Maximum Flexibility this Summer at Circus Center!

Our instructors have a busy summer planned! Some will be representing Circus Center at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in DC in July, others will be attending the National Youth Circus festival in New Jersey, and others have gigs, trips and more planned.

With all of their plans (and yours too!), we have opted to make all summer adult recreation classes drop-in only. Session enrollment will return as an option in the fall, but for the Summer 2017 session (June 5-Sept 3) all classes are drop-in enrollment and can be paid for with class packs or single credits.

Summer session will open for drop in enrollment at 10am on Tues May 9. The fastest way to enroll will be via your own MindBody account. Make sure that you have valid payment information and any necessary pre-reqs on your account in advance

Session enrollment typically offers our best pricing, but all class packs will be on sale starting May 5 so that you can continue to train within your budget. We WILL return to session enrollment for the fall and there will be NO extensions to class pack expiration dates, so purchase wisely!

Please note that if classes are full, get on the waitlist and don't be discouraged! The waitlist will be significantly more active over the summer since everyone can take advantage of the 24-hour cancellation policy.

We hope that this change gives you the chance to try a new instructor, get into a class that has previously been filled with session-enrolled students, and take a week or two off from training to enjoy your summer without losing class credits.

THE ONGOING IMPACT OF SHOW LOVE

Last winter, we ran the SHOW LOVE fundraiser to support our community production fund. The costs of putting on community shows, like the Winter and Spring Showcases, are not covered by class tuition or by ticket sales. Your contributions helped us raise over $17,000 to produce at least 5 original circus shows in 2017, starring our talented community: professional-track youth, Clown Conservatory trainees, and advanced adult students. Sharing the magic of live circus, and creating valuable opportunities for our talented community to perform and share their art is a vital part of our mission, and you’ve made a big impact. Thank you!

Your donations have enabled Circus Center to make very specific and strategic purchases that affect everyone who performs in or attends a community production here. This is what we’ve accomplished so far:

Show Love Total Raised: $17,409
  • $3,200 - An amazing new light board, the ETC Colorsource 40 AV. This is an incredible upgrade that will produce beautiful, easy to use, and professional lighting for all of Circus Center’s community shows. See it in action at SFYC’s show Circus Fracas!
  • $1,575 - New speakers for Theater, which so far have been used by Clown Conservatory’s show The Supers and Circus Fracas - and all other theater shows going forward.
  • $1,935 - Lighting equipment, fogger and 3 microphones. Now the majority of our show lighting can run on normal extension cords, saving a lot of money on cabling, and we have four microphones for our performers, instead of one, for all of our shows.
  • $500 - Riggers adjusting middle point in the Theater so it’s exactly center stage.
  • $5,000 - Part of the Technical Director’s salary. A huge and important step for our organization, SHOW LOVE has helped us hire a Technical Director (hi Hector!), to help take the quality and professionalism of our productions to the next level, and keep you looking and sounding beautiful onstage.
Total so far: $12,210

Total remaining for future community shows: $5,199

Thank you for your support, and see you at the shows! Don’t miss Circus Fracas, April 29-May 13.

Here are some more words on why Circus Center runs fundraising campaigns like the New Net & Equipment Campaign and Show Love.

WHY RAISE MONEY?

Circus Center’s mission is to spread the joy of circus through performance, training, and community outreach. Our total budget for this fiscal year (2017) is over $1.4 million dollars. That includes instructors, administration, and staff for the dozens of classes a week we offer, professional-track and recreational youth programs, the professional training program Clown Conservatory, a production season with 12+ shows a year, our adaptive circus outreach program, and maintenance and repair costs for our building and equipment.

Most of the revenue to cover these costs – about 85%, in fact – comes from tuition for classes, group events, and summer camps. So why bother raising money at all? The basic answer is, we run fundraising campaigns so we can better serve our community and pursue our mission. More specifically, we raise funds to make major investments in our operation, and in order to do the things that make us more than another gym, but a non-profit center for the circus arts.

When it comes to investments, we look at two kinds: new and deferred. If we hadn’t run the New Net and Equipment campaign, we still would have replaced the flying trapeze net. After all, it was time for it to be replaced. But without your support, we might not have been able to do everything else for months, maybe years, while we saved up: upgrade all the toilets, or purchase new stilts, or replace the lights in the lobby, or make other vital purchases and repairs. What’s more, our facility is almost 100 years old, and has had many of its maintenance and repair needs deferred over the years. Your phenomenal outpouring of support from the New Net & Equipment Campaign gave us the freedom and flexibility to begin to catch up on 20 years of much-needed repairs, purchase more equipment, and fix more things, faster, to give you a better circus training experience.

Other fundraising efforts, like SHOW LOVE and our recent major donor work, enable us to do important things that don’t cover their own costs, like community productions, outreach programs, and more. In this way, we’re much like any other non-profit.

With your donations, partnership, and advocacy, we can bring the same professional quality shows, training, and outreach to the community we have loved and served for over 30 years. Thank you for your support, past and present, and for being part of the Circus Center family.



Final Update: New Net & Equipment Campaign

Last spring, we ran the New Net and Equipment Campaign, which started out as a $10,000 fundraiser to replace, install, and maintain our flying trapeze net. Thanks to a tremendous outpouring of support from you, our community, we ended up raising almost $27,000 – $17,000 over our original goal! – to support your equipment needs and the maintenance of our historic building. Here’s the final breakdown of what your donations to the New Net and Equipment Campaign have accomplished.

Of the $4,016 remaining at the end of our last update, we have been able to cover the follow expenses:
  • $1000 - Trapeze maintenance since January
  • $600 - New rope, rope covers, carabiners, swivels, and plates for Rope classes, purchased in March
  • $270 - Rescue 8s (rigging equipment) for tissus, purchased in March
  • $156 - Swivels for tissus, single point trapezes and other apparatuses, ordered in April
  • $900 - New tissus, ordered in April
  • $500 - Replacement ropes for trapezes, ordering in May
  • $590 - Order of new practice juggling balls, ordering in May
Total = $4,016

When you think about what last spring’s campaign did for Circus Center, it’s pretty amazing: a new flying net with maintenance for years; new mats in the theater and upstairs studio; new toilets in both restrooms; 13 pairs of custom-built stilts; and so much more. The New Net and Equipment Campaign made a huge impact on for Circus Center and everyone who trains here. Thank you for your support - look at the difference it made!

In part 2 of this post, see an update on last winter’s campaign, SHOW LOVE.

PS: Did you give $100 or more to the New Net campaign? Have you picked up your piece of the old net? If not (or you’re not sure) you still can! Just email Sarah - sarah@circuscenter.org or ask at the Front Desk next time you’re in.

Spring 2017 Showcase: Call for Performers

EXTENDED APPLICATION DEADLINE – MAY 1

This spring, Circus Center will produce a showcase featuring performances by our adult students. The showcase will be presented on Saturday, May 20 at 7:30 pm.

Like last year's LIFTOFF, the showcase will be informal, but nicely produced: the space will have a full lighting and sound set-up, and performers are asked to put some effort into your costumes and makeup. A member of the Circus Center staff will serve as Emcee. We will design and print flyers, postcards, and programs, and we will do our usual promotional activities online and elsewhere. it will be $10/person (16 & Under = Pay-What-You-Can), and we will take reservations in advance via Brown Paper Tickets.

Flying trapeze students will work with Mike Greenberg and the other flying instructors to put together the flying portion of the show. We will take 6-8 additional acts. Other students who are interested in performing in one of these slots should fill out this form (one form per act, not per performer). Our goal is to produce a well-balanced show (not too many performers on any single apparatus) with students who are ready to perform (based on what your Circus Center teachers tell us). So fill out this form as soon as possible, and no later than April 17 May 1.

Relevant dates and times for performers:
  • May 1: Performers must either submit a video of their act IN COSTUME or arrange a time to show it to Barry. Acts deemed unready for public performance at this time may be cut from the show.
  • May 14: Rehearsal. 5p Call, 6p Start
  • May 20: Tech Rehearsal and SHOW: 1p Call, 3p Tech Start. 5p Dinner Break, 7:30p Show Start
Questions? Email Barry at barry@circuscenter.org. Want to apply? Fill out this form!

Announcing a New In-School Inclusive Circus Outreach Program

Paz OMS

Circus Center is happy to announce that this January we launched a new community outreach program offering a progressive circus curriculum for children with learning differences and developmental disabilities.

This exciting new project is an 8-month pilot program developed in partnership with Open Mind School, a private school on the peninsula for students facing these sorts of challenges, and a private funder.

Our expert instructors offering a range of circus activities like juggling, tightwire, balance, clowning, stretching, and acrobatics in a small school setting with support from the school's expert staff. The school administration has been extremely supportive and excited to be bringing circus arts to their students for the first time, and the students have been very enthusiastic so far!

We are thrilled to be expanding Circus Center's outreach this way. Circus Center’s mission is to spread the joy of circus through training, performance, and community outreach, and the chance for us to build an inclusive circus program that any kid can enjoy is both great privilege and a service to our mission. We are looking forward to building on this project and giving even more kids the chance to explore the joys of circus arts.

Thank you to the project’s funders; Barry Kendall and Sarah Bruhns whose hard work made this project possible; Board Members Kristin Urquiza and Leo Harris for their advice and support; the administration and staff of Open Mind School; our expert instructors; and for your well wishes as we embark on this exciting new program!

Kufer OMS

Call for Directors for Fall Adult Rec Show

In the last three years, Circus Center has begun once again producing unique, innovative circus productions featuring our adult recreational students, faculty, and community members. Shows like Cabaret Metamorphoses and Guilty as Sin have played to packed houses and given our students invaluable opportunities to learn from creating and performing a show.

Now, we will produce another show drawing on the talents of our amazing community, this fall in the Theater. Our renovated Theater space offers directors much greater control over production elements than is possible in the gym, and our recent successful fundraising campaign ensures that we will have adequate resources to help directors realize their vision for a compelling circus-theater production.

We invite interested directors to submit brief proposals: tell us what kind of show you would like to create! Spell out as much as possible about things like concept/story, cast requirements, music, crew, production elements, and so on.

Exact dates are TBD, but we expect the show to run September 7–17. Main rehearsal period would take place over the summer, although directors are welcome to hold auditions and begin work earlier.

Interested directors should submit proposals to Barry Kendall, Executive Director, no later than Sunday, February 19.


Show Love Success! Thanks to You, We Are...


Show-Love---Newsletter_copy


Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, to every one of you who gave to SHOW LOVE!

Together, over this campaign, we raised just over $17,400 for Circus Center's coming season of free, low-cost, and pay-what-you-can community shows. That's $2,400 over our original goal - thank you!

Your contributions have made several important things possible already:

  • We're hiring a Technical Director, an important step in our commitment to bring you professional-quality shows and performing experiences (by the way, we're accepting applications now - full job posting here).
  • We are also hiring a lighting designer, stage manager, and costume designer for the SF Youth Circus Show (interested? See the job postings here).
  • We built at ½ inch scale working model of the Theater, an essential tool for designing shows.
  • Soon we'll be putting out a call for directors for September's Adult Recreational Student Show in the Theater.
And this is just the beginning!

Your support reminds us how special, strong, and generous the Circus Center community is. Thank you so much for partnering with us to bring the joy of circus arts to our community, and give a spotlight to the next generation of circus artists.

Besides donating, there's another incredibly important way you can support Circus Center's community shows: come see them! Here's what's coming up:

  • Mar 23-25 & Mar 30-Apr 1: Clown Conservatory's show, The Supers
  • Apr 29-30, May 5-9 & May 12-13: The San Francisco Youth Circus' Show
  • May 20: Flying Trapeze & Adult Rec Student Spring Showcase
  • September (dates TBD): Fall Adult Rec Student Show
So subscribe to the Circus Center newsletter and watch the blog for news throughout the year about our upcoming shows, and how your gift to SHOW LOVE is making a difference.

Thank you - we can't wait to see you at the shows!

Onwards and upwards,

Barry

Barry Kendall
Executive Director, and

The Board of Directors, Steve, Sara M, Jennings, Xiaohong, Elena, Felicity, Texas, Katie, Tracey, Sarah B, Phoenix, Fernando, Sarah H, the Student Services Team, and all the staff and students of Circus Center

P.S. It's never too late to help bring free/low-cost/PWYC circus in your community - any donation throughout the year helps Circus Center share the magic of circus arts with you! You can support the circus arts at any time by giving here: www.circuscenter.org/donate


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