mini circusKids love the circus and the circus makes up a large part of the character that is Sarasota, Florida. Combine that with one of the top 10 beaches for families in the world, and you’ve got the perfect destination for a successful family vacation – with teens, tweens, grandparents – the whole crew.

The circus is center ring – so to speak – since Ringling had its headquarters in Sarasota for many years. All of the circus entertainers I met at the different attractions knew each other. The award winning juggling sensation, Gena Shvartsman, a 4th generation circus performer from Russia, is married to Mateo of the Cristiani Brothers’ Trampoline Act and they introduced me to their newest performer -12 week old Mateo.

A running theme during our press trip was passion – so many of the places we visited were created or run by passionate and persistent people like Kay Rosaire, the woman who founded Big Cat Habitat, Bob who is refurbishing the Ringling Bros train, Dolly Jacobs who founded Circus Sarasota and performs at the Ringling Bros Museum and Nancy who makes the best BBQ.

{youtube}1_ROgZpy_84{/youtube}

Also check out 13 things to do in Sarasota with a 13-year-old!