National Circus Project Allows Leighton Students New Experiences

Submitted Article

OSWEGO, NY – “The circus is in town!” is a shout heard annually at the Frederick Leighton Elementary School.

The National Circus Project has provided unique physical education experiences for children at the west side Oswego school.

Once again the Frederick Leighton Home and School Association hosted this special event.

Throughout the week students have the opportunity to learn and practice a variety of acrobatics and juggling experiences.

National Circus Project at Leighton
Hailey Ihlow and Abby Allen show their expertise balancing on the globes during the grand finale of the Leighton National Circus Project.

Physical education classes take on a “circus” atmosphere as youngsters from kindergarten through sixth grade had the chance to work with two ring masters from the National Circus Project.

On the final day the program is culminated in spectacular fashion as the sixth graders “enter the center ring” to perform for the entire Leighton community.

Ringmasters Larry Rundle and Yang Xaio Di  coordinate the fast paced show.

Students performed with the lasso, circus feathers, spinning plates, juggled, used devil sticks, did high walking stilt tricks, balanced on boards, displayed the diabolo and juggled and stood on huge balls.

This year’s jugglers included Brooke Krassowski, Kaeley Miles and Tyler Pulver while on the balance board were Cody Cheeley, Jessica Johnston, and Dakota Sage.

Balancing feathers were Olivia Farden, Rodney Howard, Lilli Johndrew, Cory Moshier, Cassidy Taylor and Jorge Vasquez.

Diabolo performers included Quenton Bailey, Devin Caruso, Joe Clavelli, Jonathan Cuyler, Chris Dennis, Gabrielle Gonzalez, Andrew Hall, Emily King, Denise Lamphier, Destiny Palmer, Jordan Sherman and Matt Wise.

Standing on the globes were Abby Allen, Karen Collins, Hannah Fitzgerald, Hailey Ihlow and Taylor Simpson.

This year’s spinning plate artists included Tim Fantom, Charlene Fragale, Alexis Hoey, Cassidy Jensen, Kayleen Piazza, Josh Scheirer, Tiffany Sobrino and Jennifer Tale.

Showing their expertise with devil sticks were Graham Barney, Zack Bunnell, Nick Boone, Meghan LiVoti, Greg Rhinehart, Loren Willmes and Brandon Wolfe.

Showing their high walking ability on stilts were Chris Aller, Allison Batchelor, Danielle Boyzuck, Morgan Hillman, Courtney Johnson, Kyle McCauley, Michael Prevo, Anne Reynolds, Johnna Scruton, Deondra Smith and Grabriel Wise.

The lasso performers were Jaraliz Derosa, Haley Graham, Cayla Knopp and Tiffany Smith.

Physical Education teacher Deb Lavner said, “This is always a tremendous experience for our students. It is amazing to see progress during the week as this type of project allows many of our students to try something different. You wouldn’t believe all of the smiles from our students as they accomplish tune their abilities to be in the circus.”