Living her dream; Bothun face painting on Ringling tour, going to Clown College


Being a full-time clown was supposed to be Plan B for Julia Bothun. But, while looking through college information with her mom, Tricia Manuel, pursuing a clown career became the No. 1 option.
“I said, ‘How long are we going to kid ourselves?’ She smiled and said, ‘I don’t know,’” Bothun recalled.
At that point, she was already scheduled to audition for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College.
“That’s when we knew I wasn’t going to college,” Bothun said. “When we bought the ticket (to go to the audition) it was one of those, ‘Is this really happening?’ moments.”
Bothun had another one of those moments at 9:56 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, when she received her invite to Clown College, which will take place Nov. 1 to 11.
She is looking forward to following in the footsteps of her mom and adopted brother, DJ Weiss.
“It’s everything my mom and brother went through,” Bothun said. “I’m excited that I get a turn now. … I want to make my own story. I just need to get here and show I’m not everyone who’s trained me, but I am me and I’m special. Until then, I’m going to keep working.”
For now, she is working as a face-painter on the Ringling Bros. Blue Show.
More information appears in this week's Messenger.