Have you heard about the Weeki Wachee Mermaids? They are real live mermaids that swim and perform at Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. They do live shows daily and even pose for photos!
21 Weeki Wachee Mermaids Facts You Never Knew!
How much do Weeki Wachee mermaids make?
This is the most asked question about the mermaid! Check out fact #1 below.
Where are the Weeki Wachee mermaids?
They located at Weeki Wachee State Park in Weeki Wachee Florida just north of Tampa.
How long do the mermaids hold their breath?
4 Minutes! Check out more in fact #12 below.
Can mermaids breathe underwater?
Yes, they use a breathing hose. Check out fact #3 for more info.
1. The Mermaids salary.
They get paid $12 an hour to start. They have to be able to work a minimum of 4 days week. Since Weeki Wachee is near Tampa, this job is perfect for college students.
2. They are underwater ballet dancers.
They do a lot of choreographed dances to music underwater. They have to know all the moves and many of them follow traditional ballet moves.
3. The hardest thing to learn is the breathing hose.
Ther are a lot of things to learn to pass your mermaid test but they all say the hardest part is learning how to use the breathing hose. If they take in too much air they float too high. If they don’t take in enough air then they will sink.
4. The mermaid interviews are anything but traditional.
The last time the park had adition they have 50 girls show up. Their interview was an endurance test and 60% of them didn’t pass. Of the ones who did they only hired 3.
5. There have been over 1,500 Weeki Wachee Mermaids.
They say approximately 1,500 mermaids have swum in the shows since the debuted over 60 years ago.
6. The endurance test.
The endurance test we mentioned is where the girls have to be able to swim 400 yeads against the 4MPH current, and they are timed!
7. Winding River State Park?
The parks name is Weeki Wachee is a Seminole Indian name which means “little spring” or “winding river.” So the mermaid’s real name is ‘Little Spring Mermaids’ or ‘Winding River Mermaids.’
8. They swim with wildlife.
It is absolutely normal for manatees, fish, turtles, and even alligators and snakes to be in the water with the mermaids.
9. The water Temperature in 74 Degrees.
The water in the springs in 72-74 degrees all year long. That sound warms but really it’s cold.
10. Women leave the spring shivering from their show.
The mermaid body temperature drops a full degree for the 30 minutes they are in the water doing their show. But they do it with a smile.
11. The 100-foot dive.
The mermaids will dive up to 117 feet during their show for costume changes etc. The area os the springs where they do their show is over 400 feet deep.
12. They hold their breath for how long?!
Many of these professional mermaids can hold their breath for up to four minutes.
13. Deepest Spring.
Weeki Wachee Springs in the deepest naturally formed spring in the United States, and the only one with mermaids.
14. The oldest Weeki Wachee Mermaid.
The oldest mermaid still preforming is 76 years old. Her name is Dottie Meares.
15. 365 days a year.
Shows are held 365 days a year, they don’t close! Right no they do 4 shows a day. 2 shows of the Little Mermaid and 2 of a show called Weeki Wow which is the history of the area mixed in with all your favorite mermaid moves.
The girls will do their famous mermaid circle and even eat and drink underwater.
16. Even the stars have been star stuck!
The park has hosted many famous names including Elvis Presley, Esther Williams, Don Knotts, Arthur Godfrey, Kevin Smith, and Larry the Cable Guy.
The springs have also been the scene of several movies and TV shows such as Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid (1948), Neptune’s Daughter (1949), and Bobcat Goldthwait’s Misfits & Monsters (2018).
17. State Park Status
The park earned it’s State Park title on November 1, 2008, when the state of FL took it over from ABC (like ABC news!)
18. Do the Weeki Wachee Mermaids do music videos?
Yes, they do! They are featured several times in Kelly Clarkson’s music video “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)”.
19. The early mermaids did what?
When the park first started there was no marketing budget. To draw attention the girls would hear a car coming and run to the road in their bathing suits to flag them down. They would then jump in the water and perform.
20. Weeki Wachee Mermaids travel.
Since the mermaids are now so popular they do travel and do small performances in other aquariums around the country and have even swum with a few sharks.
21. More mermaids then people?
This is a fun fact. There are more mermaids in the city of Weeki Wachee Florida then there are people! There are around 15 mermaids on staff at the park but only 12 people live in the Weeki Wachee city limits according to 2000, 2010 and 2015 census.
Wow! Lots of mermaid facts and info there! If you want to know a bit more and see the Weeki Wachee mermaids in action watch the video below!