Times Union Center Bans Elephant Acts After PETA Appeal

Statewide Ban Awaits Governor's Signature as Tarzan Zerbini Circus Leaves Albany, Whistleblower Alleges Cruelty at Garden Bros. Circus

For Immediate Release:
September 12, 2017

David Perle 202-483-7382

Albany, N.Y. – A box of delicious vegan brownies is on its way from PETA to the Times Union Center, which confirmed that it will no longer host elephant acts after last weekend’s shows by the Tarzan Zerbini Circus. The arena’s decision came after discussions with PETA, which shared information about the cruelty inherent in circuses that use animals and details about the pending New York law that would prohibit the use of elephants in traveling shows statewide.

“Today’s public doesn’t want to see wild animals bullied into performing tricks, and as Ringling Bros. has shut down, the Times Union Center’s kind decision is right on-trend,” says PETA Foundation Captive Animal Law Enforcement Associate Director Rachel Mathews. “PETA urges venues nationwide to commit to hosting only circuses that showcase amazing acrobats, clowns, and other willing human performers.”

PETA pointed out to the Times Union Center that, among other citations, Tarzan Zerbini has a history of failing to maintain a veterinary-care program and that elephants used by the circus have seriously injured children and workers. In 2016 and 2017, it successfully toured through Canada without wild animals after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service barred it from taking elephants across the border following a PETA lawsuit.

Another circus that frequently travels to Albany is Garden Bros. Circus, which was recently the subject of a whistleblower report alleging that elephants were electrically shocked backstage and left dripping blood from wounds inflicted by handlers. Both Garden Bros. and Tarzan Zerbini will be unable to use elephants in New York if the Elephant Protection Act—which is awaiting Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s signature—goes into effect.

PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment.” For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind