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Cortlandt Daily Voice serves Buchanan, Cortlandt & Croton
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Cortlandt Daily Voice serves Buchanan, Cortlandt & Croton

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Letter: Stop The Kelly Miller Circus From Running In Verplanck

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VERPLANCK, N.Y. -- The Cortlandt Daily Voice accepts signed letters to the editor. Send letters to

To The Editor:

It is tremendously disappointing to see that the Rotary Club of Cortlandt Manor is hosting a live-animal circus in Verplanck on June 16th and 17th. For an organization whose mission is rooted in service and ethics, it seems to be exceptionally contradictory that they would participate in a practice that is so widely considered to be barbaric and outdated. In the US, there are bans on circus animals in towns/cities across 22 states, including several places in NY. In the UK, over 200 local authorities have bans. Countries across the world even have NATIONWIDE bans on the use of some or all wild animals in circuses.

Why are we so slow to catch on? Make no mistake – the animals used in the Kelly Miller Circus animals ARE abused, as are all circus animals, even if we can’t prove what we’ve heard about physical beatings. They aren’t allowed to engage in their natural behaviors, such as socializing, roaming, and foraging, and they endure grueling travel schedules and performance requirements, in temperatures often above 80 and 90 degrees. Sometimes animals like this lash out, putting people in danger. Despite the facts above and a petition with 800+ signatures in just a few days, (,

Rotary Club of Cortlandt Manor President Sharon Irving defends her decision to host the circus, saying on Facebook that the Rotary has “had the animals blessed each time by a minister who would attest to the beautiful condition of the animals.” That means nothing. Irving invites people to visit the circus to see for themselves. Too bad abuse doesn’t typically take place under the watchful eye of concerned citizens. Irving also insists that our concerns about Kelly Miller are unfounded, but we have sources to back us up:

I’m very pleased Coles Market, Bagels on Hudson, and Croton Creamery have stopped advertising and selling tickets. l hope that Sharon Irving will follow their lead and cancel this circus immediately.

Hillary Millman

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