Nova Scotia

'The show must go on' despite circus bikes stolen in Sydney

The promoter of an American circus touring Nova Scotia says the show will go on after two motorcycles used in the act were stolen in Sydney over the weekend.

The Great Benjamins Circus has recovered the motorcycles and is repairing them

Two motorcyles used by The Great Benjamins Circus were stolen while the travelling circus was in Sydney on the weekend. (Submitted by The Great Benjamins Circus)

An American travelling circus is not soured on Nova Scotia after two special motorcycles were stolen in Sydney over the weekend.

Cape Breton Regional Police say The Great Benjamins Circus motorcycles were stolen early Sunday morning on Keltic Drive.

They were recovered late Monday, but police released few details.

The circus performed in Sydney on Saturday and Sunday.

Louis Leonard, the circus's Canadian booking and promotions agent, said the performers are still excited to be in the province.

"Stuff happens, and there's bad people everywhere and there's good people everywhere, so we want to cater to the good people, and there's plenty of them in Nova Scotia to come and see our show," he said.

Under investigation

Insp. Stephen MacKinnon said the motorbikes were recovered and picked up by the circus.

Charges are not expected, he said, but the theft remains under investigation.

MacKinnon said sometimes police do not disclose how stolen goods were recovered, because that can reveal investigation techniques.

It's also difficult, he said, when the complainant is from out of province and may not be around for a court case.

Show must go on

Leonard said despite the loss of two motorcycles, the show must go on.

"There's a blown engine on one of them and the other one is bashed up somewhat, so we are actively working on repairing these bikes as I speak to you, and we'll put them back in ASAP," he said.

The motocross bikes are equipped with pollution-control devices to reduce the amount of carbon monoxide in the exhaust.

Leonard said that's important for performers and the audience watching inside the big blue tent.

Globe of Death act

The bikes were part of the Globe of Death act, where motorcycle riders perform inside a sphere.

The circus also includes acrobats, clowns and jugglers.

Leonard said the motorcycle act takes up about seven minutes of the 90-minute show, so the circus is carrying on.

The show is in Truro on Tuesday and is expected to be in Dartmouth from Thursday to Saturday.


About the Author

Tom Ayers


Tom Ayers has been a reporter and editor for more than 30 years. He has spent the last 15 years covering Cape Breton and Nova Scotia stories. You can reach him at


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