Ringling Museum of Art,
Sarasota, Florida

During my recent visit to the Gulf Coast of Florida, I had the good fortune to be able to visit Sarasota, for the express purpose of exploring the Ringling Museum of Art, and the surrounding gardens.

Most know John Ringling for his association and ownership of the Ringling Bros circus. But, his legacy is wrapped up in the world class art museum, circus museum and his historic mansion. All of these are all available to the public for viewing.

I originally came to visit because of my fascination with the old days of circuses. I was not disappointed by the plethora of exhibits housed in the Museum of Circus. There was the Wisconsin, the private rail car of John and Mable Ringling, built in 1905. It was amazing to see the splendor that the couple enjoyed while traveling the country.

In the Tibbals Learning Center, you can see the cornerstone of the Circus Museum when you view world's largest miniature circus, The Howard Bros. Circus Model. This is a replica of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, which took over 50 years to build.

There is a mansion which was built by Ringling, for he and his wife to enjoy while they ran the circus in Sarasota, over the winters.
The mansion is reminiscent of Venice’s Doge’s Palace, with beautiful views of Sarasota Bay from it's marble palazzo.

This marvelous attraction which includes a fine art museum housing Ringling's personal collection of masterpieces, a fun-filled circus museum, the beautiful Ca' d'Zan and its surrounding gardens, make for a very interesting day of activities in Sarasota.



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