They say laughter is the best medicine but the art of clowning is slowly fading away.
Clowns from seven states across the Midwest gathered for the Midwest Clown Association's annual convention in Davenport, Iowa.
"We offer a lot of things, and it just continues their education in clowning," said clown Annette Darragh.
Students learn the different types of clowns, improv and the skills of face painting.
While it's all fun and games, Darragh says the old form of art is slowly fading away. The association hopes to recruit more clowns, and to remind people of the meaning of their art.
"I think there's a child in all of us, and it allows us to become a child again through the eyes of another person," said Darragh.
The association offers a Junior Joey program to get little ones involved in clowning, too. Competitions are part of the convention, and admission to watch them is free and open to the public,
The convention continues through Saturday, October 5, 2014.