How many circus clowns does it take to capture three elephants in a parking lot?
Not sure, but they needed quite a few to corral three elephants that managed to escape their enclosure Saturday at the Moolah Shrine Circus in St. Louis.
The pachyderms apparently found their freedom when loud noises from circus goers spooked the elephants, and they fled.
They didn't get far... they only made it to the employee parking lot before handlers were able to round them up, according to Dennis Burkholder, spokesman for St. Louis' Shriners.
One handler trying to corral the elephants wanted to tempt them with treats, circus goer Allie Tunncliff told KSDK. She manage to take a video clip of an elephant between cars.
"She yelled to one guy, 'I need anything, just pretzels, any kind of food,' " Tunncliff said.
— NBC News (@NBCNews) March 23, 2014
— Brett Rosner (@Brosner85) March 23, 2014
Burkholder said two cars were damage in a private, employee parking lot. The damaged cars belong to circus employees — or Shriners — whom the circus website describes as men in "funny red hats, who drive little yellow cars, dress like clowns."
The elephants themselves were unhurt, but the circus gave them a a bit of a break for Saturday night's performance, allowing them to rest after all the excitement, Burkholder said.
Needless to say, Twitter had a field day with the escape news.
— Glic (@Glic) March 23, 2014
Elephants escaped from a St. Charles circus. Sources say they were headed for the Applebee's or the other Applebee's. http://t.co/4vTU8s6fQx
— Matt Sebek (@MattSebek) March 22, 2014
— Sam Hartle (@Sam_Hartle) March 22, 2014
— Shaun Streeter (@santhony989) March 22, 2014
Why am I covering basketball when THERE ARE ELEPHANT ESCAPES HAPPENING IN ST. LOUIS?!? http://t.co/eLNy5XENDd
— Joan Niesen (@JoanNiesen) March 23, 2014
Image via YouTube