Families from all three campuses gathered at the Lower School (LS) on May 7 for the 65th annual BB&N Circus, a Dr. Seuss-themed extravaganza that raised $22,000 for the school’s financial aid program—$8,000 more than last year.
Organized by the LS Parents Association (LSPA), the event welcomed approximately 700 attendees and over 250 parent and student volunteers.
Students walked down Buckingham Street to be greeted by various performers balancing on stilts and blowing bubbles, and food stands of “Truffula Trees” (cotton candy), “Pink Ink Yink Drink” (pink lemonade), “Horton ’ears of Corn” (corn on the cob), and the “Splendiferous Greek Salad” lined the entrance.
At the stage on the basketball court,
Angela Liu ’18 performed a ballet routine, Gray Goldberg ’25 and Oliver McNamara ’24 both played the guitar, and Callie Heppner ’27 played the drums, among other acts.
Down the school’s brick path, circus- goers found annual favorites such as craft tables, a photo booth, a dunk tank, a mechanical bull ride, and inflatable rides, such as two giant, transparent hamster balls for humans, which made their debut last year. This year children could also ride a mild-mannered pony.
“My [younger] brother really enjoyed racing against his friends in the bouncy house obstacle course,” attendee Julia McCauley ’19 said. “It was a really fun service opportunity and a good way to give back
to the BB&N community.”
This year’s silent auction featured 17 parent-donated items, such as a tour of The Boston Globe, weekend trips to New York, and Patriots tickets. This year bidding for the silent auction opened a week prior to the event.
Also for the first time this year, in addition to the usual will-call table at the entrance of the circus, the LSPA used the school website to sell tickets for admission and wristbands for the rides.
“Offering tickets online is just another new convenience for busy families,” Circus Chair Alexi Conine P’22, ’24, ’27 said. “It reduces the line on the day of the circus and also helps encourage families to attend, even if the weather isn’t perfect.”
In fact the skies did open up about an hour before the event ended, but the deluge only brought families closer together—literally—under and around the tent where LS students were demonstrating their taekwondo moves.
Volunteer Margaret Hardigg ’18, who helped set up the food stands, said she appreciated the friendliness of those in attendance.
“Everyone was in great spirits,” she said. “I’m glad I volunteered because I think it’s important to come together and see the teachers and parents—who worked so hard on this—as everyday people.”
Sam Roche ’19, who volunteered at the cotton candy station, said he liked seeing how the entire school community came together.
“It is my family’s first year at BB&N,” he said. “We were really impressed with everyone’s enthusiasm to support students on financial aid.”
The LSPA first met in September to start planning the circus and soon after began publicizing the event with posters, messages in the LS Parent Newsletter, and save-the-date postcards sent to LS and seventh grade families.
LS Director Shera Selzer said she suggested the Dr. Seuss theme for its appeal to all ages.
“[The theme] embodies the wondrful creativity, imagination, and childlike wonder of the infinite world of Dr. Seuss,” Ms. Selzer said. “This world of Seuss makes you believe in previously unimaginable possibilities. I thought that it would be a lot of whimsical fun.”