Circus Quirkus is Rotary Newmarket’s major fun and fundraising event every year. It’s a blend of great world circus acts including acrobats, clowns and contortionists, whimsical juggling and more, and is brought to the arena by IEL, an events company.
Tickets are sponsored by local businesses and then these complimentary tickets are distributed to charities supporting less fortunate, disadvantaged and disabled children & their families, allowing them to have a great day out together. Over 10,000 tickets are distributed to attend one of the three shows throughout the day.
But if you ask the Newmarket Rotarians and their partners and other volunteers who give up their day to help run the event, the most fun and overall satisfaction is had by them.
Close to 100 volunteers turn up to set up the day, organise the carparking, welcome the crowds of excited kids and parents and caregivers, barbecue the sausages, make the candy floss and popcorn, look after the stalls, feed the volunteers, usher the spectators to their seats, and generally make the event as enjoyable as possible for those attending. As well as Newmarket Rotarians, their partners, children and grandchildren, the Club also draws on helpers from its associated schools, St Cuthberts and Dilworth.
The volunteers not only have a great time working and chatting together, but also find it incredibly rewarding seeing the kids (of all ages) arriving, very excited about seeing a circus “for the very first time”, and then seeing their joy after the performance and their gratitude for being invited free. This is then reinforced by the emails the club receives afterwards.
Here’s an example:
“Morena, I would like to pass on my thanks to Rotary Newmarket for the wonderful opportunity to attend the Circus Quirkus last night. Our 8 year old son was a lucky recipient of tickets (via Coeliac NZ) for our family to attend. He said "there are not many great things about having Coeliac Disease. But, tonight made me feel very special because I could only come because I had Coeliac Disease. I loved the whole show and loved feeling a bit extra special". A very big thank you to your entire team for making an 8 year old feel just a little bit extra special!       Kind regards, Adie”.
Circus Quirkus ticks all the Rotary boxes for Newmarket: great fellowship, excellent fundraising for the Club’s charity works, outstanding community involvement and reach-out, and wonderful feedback from those attending.

Source:  Brian McMath, Rotary Newmarket