Folding The Tents


You’ve probably all heard the phrase “folding the tent.”  It means packing up and moving on – or, in extreme cases, shutting down forever.  In the case of one American institution, it means the latter.

After 146 years of spills, thrills, chills and laughter, the world famous Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus – the self-proclaimed “Greatest Show on Earth” – is taking down its big top tent pole.  The last shows will be in May.

Circus chairman and CEO Kenneth Feld issued this statement:

“After much evaluation and deliberation, my family and I have made the difficult business decision that Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® will hold its final performances in May of this year. Ringling Bros. ticket sales have been declining, but following the transition of the elephants off the road, we saw an even more dramatic drop. This, coupled with high operating costs, made the circus an unsustainable business for the company.”

We’ll leave the circus’ dealing with animal rights activists and the story of the retiring of their famous elephants to others.  And while there’s no doubt that it costs a LOT of money to move the circus (there are actually two of them, each one touring the nation by a special train) there were other mitigating circumstances as well.

Public tastes have changed drastically.  The circus is a quaint reminder of an America gone by.  Instead,  the acrobatic Cirque du Soleil shows pack in the crowds.   Kids are more interested in their iPads and iPhones and video games.   There is, simply put, a lot more competition for a family’s entertainment dollar now than ever before – and a shorter attention span to go with it.   Increased technological advances are reshaping the face of America.  If you don’t keep up, you get left behind.

At South Dakota 811, we know that what the public wants – and what our members want – are fast and accurate locate tickets.

To that end, we continue to invest in game changing technology and updates to our system.

Whether you’re filing a ticket electronically through our Portal located on our website at , or over the phone with a Damage Prevention Agent, you can rest assured that South Dakota 811 has the most up-to-date, accurate and fastest-moving one call system on earth!

Until next week, safe digging!

By Scott Finley

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