A History of Florida Attractions with Photos and Memorabilia. 

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Sarasota (1956–1980)

Sarasota was well known as the winter home of the circus, so it was logical that a roadside attraction paying homage to the history of the circus industry would be established. The nearly all-glass building was constructed in 1956 along US 41, just north of the Ringling Museum.

In addition to daily circus acts, the attraction included an extensive tribute to the industry with memorabilia displays, parade wagons and a Hall of Fame in which circus legends were elected to permanent enshrinement. Although the Circus Hall of Fame had some initial success, the 1970s saw a steady decline in attendance. The leased land on which it was built was sold, and the attraction was forced to close in 1980. The entire collection was sold to a collector, who eventually sold it to a circus museum in Peru, Indiana.

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Index of Pre-1972 Small Florida Roadside Attractions

A list of smaller “mom and pop” Florida attractions that opened prior to 1972.

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