Goeggel also called the show potentially dangerous considering the company's record, which includes the escape of a small bear from its
"I don't understand how they could allow them to come in here with a record like this," Goeggel said.
Osborn said A Grizzly Experience is an educational show that allows people to get up close and personal with one of
"We're not a circus act in no way, shape or form," he said.
The bears will perform and be on exhibit at the
An import permit allowing the bears into the state was approved
This will be the second time a bear show has appeared at the 50th State Fair. In 2000 a show by a different operator participated in the fair without incident.
Smith said her company would not get involved with any company that mistreats or abuses its animals and wouldn't want to put the public in danger in any way.
"We've had lions and tigers, bears, sea lions and alligators, and we've never had a problem," Smith said.
Osborn said he uses only positive reinforcement to train his bears.
"Can it be dangerous? Of course, she's a grizzly bear," he said, referring to Tonk, who stands at 7 1/2 feet.
Osborn said the travel is easy for his bears in a 25-foot air-conditioned trailer that will be brought in by ship to
Goeggel said Animal Rights Hawaii calls for an end to the animal exploitation and to allowing the long-distance transport.
"Schlepping them from fair to fair to fair is a cruel life for an animal," she said.
She noted that this year marks the 20th anniversary of the infamous Tyke incident, in which a circus elephant killed a trainer and escaped during a performance at the Neal Blaisdell Center and rampaged around
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