GaryWELCOME to the Circus Fans Association of America (CFA) website! We’ve been around since 1926, and we’re for, as the ringmaster would say, “Children” of all ages!

What is a Circus Fan?

Well…  My parents took me to my first circus when I was 6 years old. I sat on the edge of my seat. I never left that seat. I was hooked. If you’re a friend of the circus, you feel as if you can never get enough of how it makes you feel. It is inspirational. It comes alive and it becomes part of you!

What is CFA? WE are, as the name would indicate, fans and friends of the Circus! Most of us never worked for a circus, though we include circus personnel past and present in our ranks. Each of us enjoys the circus in one or more of it’s many formats and are eager to share this enjoyment with others. Some of us enjoy memorabilia, the history, performers, circus models, or the logistics of the circus. Some of us are interested in a particular circus or in the performing animals and conservation efforts. Many of us enjoy life long friendships with each other and with the animals and circus personnel.

In nearly every major city and town you’ll find a few circus fans. Locally we form chapters we call “Tents” or “Tops” which organize gatherings, special events, and group visits to see a circus. Periodically we convene a National Convention. The first convention during my term of office, attracted nearly 1,000 circus aficionados, and took place July 14-18th, 2015 in West Springfield, MA and was called the “Worldwide Circus Summit 2015” (WCS2015) . You can still “visit” that convention utilizing this link:

The 2nd of the two conventions that will take place during my term of office is being called “Back to Las Vegas” and will take place at The Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas, NV, May 10, 11, and 12. See details of our 2016 plans here.

I will be succeeded May 1, 2017, by Connie Thomas, who has announced that the 2017 CFA Convention will take place in St. Louis Missouri, June 13 – 17.

With CFA, you’ll interact with fellow aficionados of the circus. We encourage you to use our website. We hope you’ll choose to “Friend” us and visit our Facebook page often. Our magazine, The White Tops, will arrive in your mailbox six times annually, and is currently about to expand it’s pages with exciting new features. Our “5,000 participating members in FIVE years” campaign is kicking off now, and we hope YOU will be one of these! Please JOIN CFA today. Click on JOIN for details.

Thank you for your interest. Remember that you get out of something in direct proportion to what you put in! Let’s interact. We never say goodbye…we say, “See you down the road.” I hope we shall!

A letter from our immediate Past President – Gary C. Payne – 2015-2017

We Support the Circus

The Purpose of the Circus Fans Association of America is:

  • Education & Understanding – To provide educational resources related the circus. To promote an understanding and appreciation of the art of the circus.
  • Communication  – To be a point of contact between the people of the circus, artists or executives, and the outside world.
  • Support – To help ensure the Circus will continue to exist among us as a social, educational and recreational art form. Visit our Calendar page to view support events..
  • Preservation – The National Circus Preservation Society (NCPS) is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization affiliated with CFA. Its main goal is to develop, promote, and advance information and knowledge for a better understanding of the American Circus, and to preserve the circus as part of
    American history.
  • Publishing – CFA has been publishing The White Tops, the official magazine of the CFA, since 1928.
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