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      The day the circus didn't come to town

      The Family Big Top Circus pulled up stakes after some miscommunication about proper permits.
      Kids who were hoping to see the â??youngest human cannon ballâ?? shot out of a rocket in Hannibal this weekend were sorely disappointed.

      The Family Fun Circus came to town Friday morning and set up camp in a lot outside Clemens Field. By the afternoon, they had already pulled up stakes and left town.

      Fire Chief Bill Madore told KHQA that the circus didn't have the proper permits and paperwork in place ahead of schedule. Despite that, city officials and the Marion County Health Department scrambled to line up all the necessary groundwork that day so the show could go on.

      â??We were all set up to go with the inspections and the next thing I know, I got word that they up and left town,â?? Madore said.

      Madore said the city did not want to cancel the event. â??As a matter of fact, my daughter was set up to go with her mom and she had her heart broken too,â?? Madore said.

      The general manager of the Hannibal Cavemen John Civitate told KHQA that the big top rolled into town and even set the horses out grazing. He said they had the insurance lined up, but apparently not the required permits.

      â??We didn't turn them away,â?? Civitate said. â??They just pulled up stakes and left. I didn't even realize they were gone.â??

      KHQA contacted the Family Fun Circus. A company spokesperson said the show came to town in 2009 and didn't have any issues. This time, a miscommunication about insurance and permits caused so much confusion, when the big top arrived on Friday morning, they couldn't hammer out all the details to put on the show by Friday night.

      â??This is all unfortunate that the Circus could not show in Hannibal and I am sorry if we have disappointed anyone in your community, especially the children that I'm sure were excited to see a Circus,â?? the spokesperson told KHQA.

      Although the circus wasn't widely advertised around Hannibal, free children's admission tickets were circulating a few days in advance of the scheduled appearance.

      â??We did everything we could to see that the show could happen, but we have the responsibility to ensure the safety of the event for everyone,â?? Chief Madore said.