To challenge children to realize the truths behind the foods they eat, the media they’re saturated with, and how they spend their free time, all while empowering them to relax, recognize their strengths, and express themselves.
The Vegetable Circus is a program of the Allied Wellness Education Network (AWEN), a national wellness organization. AWEN is a 501c3 non-profit that supports programs helping people take control of their own health.
Founded in 2005, the Vegetable Circus is a series of programs that use circus and movement arts to teach children how to take control of their own health. Originally started as a juggling circus, the Vegetable Circus added hooping in 2009 and has since become a traditional variety circus with clowning, theater, plate spinning, acrobatics, partner acrobatics, juggling, hooping and more.
Our after-school enrichment program is currently serving the Massachusetts Greater Boston Area, the California Bay area, the Raleigh Greater Triangle region of North Carolina, and the Asheville Western North Carolina region. Vegetable Circus enrichment programs teach toss juggling, contact juggling, hula-hooping, acrobatics, balancing, plate spinning, clowning and other circus skills. We use time between activities to teach lessons in respect, friendship, self-control, body awareness and healthy eating. Regardless of the venue, the mission of the Vegetable Circus is: to challenge children to realize the truths behind the foods they eat, the media they’re saturated with, and how they spend their free time, all while empowering them to relax, recognize their strengths, and express themselves.
The Vegetable Circus is a grassroots movement gone national. With roots in Asheville, NC, the Vegetable Circus national management team relocated to the Greater Boston Area in 2009. In 2010, the Boston chapter grew quickly and half of the team was able to split off to start the West Coast Chapter in Oakland, California. A fledgling group launched in Raleigh, NC early in 2012. Each chapter operates autonomously with a foundation built on a nationally focused curriculum and a passion for wellness.
National History – Notable Moments
2005-2007: Vegetable Circus premieres as an educational juggling show that inspires children to live healthy and active lives that traveled the western North Carolina region.
- October 15-16, 2005: First Show at Lake Eden Arts Festival (LEAF) Summer 2005
- May 13-14, 2006; October 21-22, 2006: Second/Third shows at Spring/Fall LEAF 2006
- June-August 2007: Buncombe County Library Show Tour
2008-2009: Vegetable Circus’ touring route expands across the southern states, up the eastern seaboard, and into New England.
- March 2008: Mary Burbank Elementary Belmont, MA
- May 2008: Educational shows at ‘The Heart of the City Plaza‘ San Antonio, TX
- February 2009: Mary Burbank Elementary Belmont, MA
- April 2009: Performance for UNC Asheville’s ‘Getting into Fitness Together’ Program
- December 2009: Brian and Rob of the Asheville chapter move to the Boston, MA area to start a second chapter of Vegetable Circus. Hynes Convention Center New Years Eve performance.
2010-2012: Vegetable Circus begins to provide continuing enrichment programs for schools and expands to the west coast.
- March 2010: Started the Vegetable Circus Enrichment Program in Somerville, MA.
- May 2010: Zach and Marria of the Boston, MA chapter move to Oakland, CA and start a third chapter of Vegetable Circus.
- August 2010: Performed at Boston Green Fest
- December 13, 2010: Performed at the Bement school in Deerfield , Western MA and appeared on NBC-22 WWLP.
- 2011: With more than two dozen performers, we drew from our national talent pool to offer a variety of event entertainment to bring our healthy message to more venues than ever before.
- 2012: The national CSA Fruit Guys allies with the Vegetable Circus to bring us in to many many schools in CA. Sara Phoenix starts a fourth chapter located in Raleigh, NC and the greater triangle region of North Carolina.