Less than one month in, 2017 is already shaking up the world as we know it. First, we learned that after 28 years in the biz, US-made brand American Apparel will be shuttering its doors 鈥 at least as far as its brick-and-mortar stores are concerned.

WILKES-BARRE, PA-May 01: Ryan Henning, an elephant handler, trainer and Deputy Animal Supervisor for Ringling Bros. with the elephants as they performed their last show at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. The elephant show had it's last show this day and the animals were trucked to Florida as they were retired. -- We followed the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus as they discontinue the elephant act as part of their shows. The Elephants will live in retirement in Florida. (Photo by Michael S. Williamson/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Now, another American institution is reportedly nearing its final days: The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus will hold its final performance in Uniondale, NY on May 21.

In a message from the show鈥檚 CEO of production, Kenneth Feld, fans were told that deciding factors included declining ticket sales (particularly following reports of animal abuse that resulted in the removal of elephants from all live performances in 2015) as well as rising production costs.

The news certainly comes as a shock, considering the show鈥檚 history 鈥 the circus has been around for 146 years. It began as a group of traveling German and French immigrants back in 1882, and became the iconic show we all know today after a 1907 merger with traveling circus man P.T. Barnum.

Now, it鈥檚 become so ingrained in our culture that couples the world over have used it as their wedding inspo, with even Lauren Conrad paying homage to its whimsy with this year鈥檚 Halloween costume.

Love it or hate it, one thing鈥檚 for sure: It鈥檚 the end of an era.

Were you a fan of the circus? Share @BritandCo.

(h/t The Atlantic, photos via Michael S. Williamson/The Washington Post + Ari Perlistein/Getty)