Acrobats, animals and clowns rolled into Calgary overnight to get set up for the annual Royal Canadian Circus.

The circus is in Calgary and Red Deer from May 9th to the 25th and features trapeze artists, jugglers, unicyclists, comedians, clowns and animal acts.

A number of the artists come from a long line of circus performers.

Gino Zoppe has been working with horses his whole life and is a member of the troupe.

He says his mother encouraged him to look for another career but he ended up here and says it’s in his blood.

Zoppe says it’s a lot of work moving from city to city with large animals but he loves his art and is passionate about it.

“The work and the time, the dedication you have for this, you have to love it, because it is so much work and it is so much time throughout the day, so if you don’t love it, there’s no reason to do it,” said Zoppe.

The life-style isn’t for everyone and while Zoppe doesn’t have a family or children yet, he’d like them to take on the family’s legacy.

“I would hope that my children would want to take it on and keep it going but that’s completely up to God and fate and everything else because I have no idea what they’re going to want to do with their lives,” said Zoppe.

All of the performers pitch in to set up the tent and the rigging and about 70 people make up this year’s circus family.

For more information, visit the Royal Canadian Circus website.

(With files from Kevin Fleming)

Post published at CTV News Calgary.