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It’s hard to go wrong with a vintage circus-themed fete, and this year’s Children's Museum of the Lowcountry annual gala boasted a big top theme that drew a festively dressed crowd. While only a few more adventurous partygoers fully adopted the circus-inspired dress code, mostly with colorful headgear, many attendees put their best foot forward in sequins, metallics, and loud prints. 

Select VIPs turned out for the cocktail hour, and they checked in at a red and white “ticket stand” before making their way down a red carpet lined with traditional carnival dart and ring-throwing games. Cocktail hour guests enjoyed champagne while checking out the silent auction and antique Ringling Brothers posters. Servers drifted through the party with wooden boxes filled with mini tomato cheese tarts and salmon bites, and the featured food vendors began bringing out their circus-inspired fare as the VIP pre-party drew to a close. 

Restaurants offered creatively named bites in keeping with the evening’s theme, such as Cru Catering’s “The Contortionist”: hand rolled pretzels with duck confit and a goat cheese dipping sauce. Their “Trapeze Churros” with chili mango orange creme were also a hit, and Fleet Landing’s “Tight Roll Walker” (a mouth-watering butter poached lobster roll) had partygoers coming back for seconds, while their “Get ya’ Popcorn” (a creative name for popcorn rock shrimp) was equally popular.

Just as everyone had about eaten their fill, the “Dancing on Air” performance kicked off. The DOA crew, a youth break dancing troupe, hit the floor to enthusiastic applause. The youngsters impressed the crowd with their acrobatic, gravity defying moves, and partygoers cheered them on loudly. 

The Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry exists to support the idea that children learn through play. The museum raises money to provide free scholarships, museum admissions, and educational day camps and programming to underserved and special needs children and their families.