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BRIEF: Monthly circus shows that don't clown around

The Bellingham Circus Guild hosts both adult and kid-friendly free shows throughout the year

Photos of the Bellingham Circus Guild. The Guild performs a show called Vaudevillingham on the 15th of every month. // Photo one courtesy of Grant Parker, photos two and three by Eric Parthum and David Horvitz

Here in Bellingham, the circus is always in town. With monthly shows at their performance venue and studio, the Bellingham Circus Guild doesn’t have to jump through hoops to entertain an audience, although they can.

The organization has a show on the 15th of every month called Vaudevillingham, a variety show featuring artists from the area. Acrobatics, comedic styling and burlesque are typically seen at these performances, with a guarantee of at least one professional entertainer.

Natale Luma, a member of the Guild and their marketing manager, sees these shows as a welcoming, community experience. These shows have been occurring for 15 years. 

“Vaudevillingham is awesome because it’s an open-stage variety show,” Luma said.

By open-stage, Luma means anyone can perform at Vaudevillingham, just so long as they register beforehand. Comedy, music and acrobatics are all things performers can bring to these events.

As for what it takes to view the show, the Guild has a welcoming policy – there is no entrance fee. However, the Guild suggests a $10 to $20 donation at the door. Nobody will be turned away due to lack of funds.

Vaudevillingham is split into two sections – one part is targeted at all ages while the latter show is geared toward adults. 

“We do a show at 7 and 9 p.m.,” Luma said. “The 7 p.m. [show] is guaranteed to be family-friendly and then after 9 we like to say anything goes.” 

If one has an interest in joining the circus, Vaudevillingham is the place to begin. To join the Circus Guild, one has to be sponsored by a member, and going to open-stage shows is the way Luma recommends meeting members.

“The other way that you can get to know members of the circus guilds is by coming to the juggling club,” Luma said. “Juggling club is every Monday from 7 to 10 p.m. at our space in Fairhaven.”

The shows feature enthusiasts and renowned professionals alike. 

“There are local circus folks, but also people who spend half of the year touring the top circuses, both domestically and internationally, so there’s a lot of variety in the show,” Luma said.

The Guild’s next show is on Dec. 15 at 7 p.m. at their studio on 6th Street in Fairhaven.

Alex Hodson

Alex Hodson (he/him) is a city news reporter for The Front this quarter. He is a second-year pre-major in journalism. When not working on The Front, he likes to play pickleball, watch movies, drink coffee and sing in Western's Concert Choir. You can reach him at

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