One summer rite of passage was my family trip to the Circus Parade. However, my experience was much more than the three-hour parade. Before regulations limited when seats could be saved, my family would reserve seats Friday night for the Sunday parade. That meant shifts of watching the seats, overnight sleepovers on the downtown concrete, and many meals at the nearby Burger King. I remember staring up from our spot at the big blue glass building and wondering what happened there. I remember seeing the spots around us eventually fill in and watching the street vendors increase as the festivities drew near. Days before we reserved our spot, we trekked down to Veteran's park to see the grandeur of the decorated wagons and experience all the sights, sounds, and smells of the circus. On the actual day, I recall waiting for the animals, getting prepared for the 40-horse hitch, and gearing up for the annual event that inevitably followed the street sweepers at the end of the parade. As the final wagons passed and the crowds scattered, my family would get out some garbage bags and start collecting the cans that others left behind. Boy, do I miss THAT circus?