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Around the state: Youth circus to be showcased in DC this summer

March 5, 2017 GMT

Youth circus to be showcased in DC this summer

ST. PAUL — A St. Paul-based youth circus school is taking its act to the nation’s capital this summer.

Circus Juventas has been invited to perform at the 50th anniversary Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington. This year’s festival focuses on circus arts and will be held on the National Mall for 10 days, from June 29 to July 4 and from July 6 to 9.

Daniel Butler, co-founder and executive director of Circus Juventas, calls the invitation the “greatest honor” for his organization, founded in 1994. Butler and his wife, artistic director Betty Butler, modeled the school on international circuses, which focus on athleticism and artistry.

The 30 circus students have to pay their own expenses to Washington. A fundraiser will be held Saturday at the Circus Juventas Big Top.

Man sentenced to 6 months for threats to 2 clinics

MINNEAPOLIS — An Anoka man has been sentenced to six months in jail for phoning threats in 2014 to two Minneapolis clinics that provide reproductive health services.

The Justice Department says 34-year-old Michael John Harris pleaded guilty a year ago to two counts and heard his sentence Monday.

Harris admitted threatening a person at one clinic with his bare hands and to cut that person’s head off with a band saw. He told a person at the second that he was going to kill them and their co-workers, and shoot everyone present there.

In a letter to Magistrate Judge Hildy Bowbeer, Harris said he had no intention of acting on his threats, but was in a bad place mentally and emotionally and let his drinking and depression get the better of him.