This Week — 18 December 2020

We are so grateful to report that circus continues to provide comfort and joy in difficult times. The Circus District wishes you a safe and happy holidays.


  • Our circus gift guide is now live at this link! We like to think that 2020 has permanently changed the meaning of ‘procrastination’ to ‘extra thoughtfulness.’ So for all of those ‘right on time’ shoppers looking for great circus books, magazines, crafts, masks and more to ship to their loved ones, look no further. This page will remain up after the holidays (gasp!), so you can support your favorite circus makers year-round. Are we missing your creations on this list? Message us at
  • As a year with catastrophic impacts on circus artists comes to a close, remember to throw some dough toward your favorite circus organizations, whether you’re looking forward to their next show, or hoping that their talents can reach populations in need of circus inspiration in the coming year.


  • Discover an instant holiday classic on The District Ringer as you read The Legend of the Great Spirits of Jugglingcraft. This ‘very 2020’ tale depicts the mystical delivery of juggling ball kits to Little Free Libraries across D.C., as the spirits of jugglingcraft quell child and parent boredom one household at a time. Special thanks to Thom Wall of Modern Vaudeville Press for the materials and inspiration behind this project.


TONIGHT (12/18)

  • Battle Night presents their first-ever hoop battle (U.S. v. Mexico) at 8:30 p.m. EST. Watch hoopers stretch their technique, style and ‘power moves’ to the max in this fun and engaging head-to-head format. Visit the Facebook page for the Zoom link, or watch on the Unicirclo Laguna YouTube channel.

TOMORROW (12/19)

  • ‘But what about diabolo battles?’ you ask. The European Diabolo Association has you covered, but there’s a catch. The (Russian) battle begins at 4 a.m. EST on 12/19, aka noon Russian time. True fans — stay up late (or wake up early) for what promises to be an epic event. Visit the European Diabolo Association’s Facebook page for the Zoom link.

MONDAY (12/21)

  • The Bindlestiff Open Stage Variety Show starts at 8 p.m. EST. This edition is bringing some festive holiday flavor to their weekly ritual. Watch on Facebook or YouTube. You can donate during the show at the links provided, or support their fantastic feats of circus anytime via the donation page on their website.



  • The Circus Up Benefit Show is a virtual production appearing online at 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Featuring a combination of live and pre-recorded acts, this show is a fundraiser for Circus Up’s youth circus programs based in the Commonwealth Circus Center in Boston. Buy tickets at this link.


  • Janelle Peters of Cirque Psych is running another Mental Health First Aid for Circus workshop on December 21. Register at this link.


  • Snag a 10- to 15-second video of your latest club or torch juggling/spinning/manipulation and submit it to be included the Club Tech Collab Video 2020. Videos should be filmed horizontally and can include passing. Drop your video in the folder at this link.
  • D.C. art space Rhizome DC has an open call for artists to submit work to reflect our present circumstances, and find creative ways to connect and take (Covid-safe) risks during a pandemic. This work will include exhibitions, residencies and workshops in the first half of 2021. All mediums and performance genres will be considered. Visit this link to apply.


  • Pending further legislation, federally funded unemployment benefit programs like Pandemic Unemployment Assistance are set to expire at the end of next week. If you have not received the benefits that you are owed, or have not filed claims to receive backpay, this is your last chance to throw your name in the hat! It’s important to remember that if you have not filed regular weekly claims, the government may try to deny your PUA benefits — even if you were rejected from traditional unemployment in the first place.
  • If you’re struggling to access benefits, consider applying for (pro bono) legal aid and reaching out to local political officials, who may be able to get your case moving while building a support network of constituents with local issues.
  • Note: This advice is based on hearsay and independent research. The Circus District is not an official source of information on UI benefits. However, we encourage artists of all stripes to seek the benefits they are legally entitled to!