KEY WEST, Fla. — Love mermaids? Want to get salty or enjoy a “mermosa” with a mermaid? The inaugural Key West Mermaid Festival is to celebrate the graceful, colorfully attired women swimmers of the magical underwater world Friday through Sunday, July 5-7.
The three-day family-friendly fest is to promote ocean awareness and safe swimming in mermaid tails. Key West–based Reef Relief is to benefit from a percentage of proceeds, or “treasure,” raised from event ticket sales.
“Mermaids are definitely surfacing everywhere these days. Becoming a mermaid makes dreams come true for so many, young and old alike,” said Kristiann Mills, founder of the Key West Mermaid Festival. “‘Mermaiding’ is also an excellent form of fitness and a great social activity that has brought together an entire community of ocean-minded people across the globe.”
The Key West Mermaid Festival kicks off Friday, July 5, with a complimentary Meet the Mermaids pool party, noon to 6 p.m. at Havana Cabana Resort, 3420 N. Roosevelt Blvd. “Swim with Mermaids” tickets, priced at $15, are for one-on-one mermaid swim sessions.
Also Friday, a 6-10 p.m. Under the Sea on The Green at Sunset Green Event Lawn, located between The Gates and 24 North hotels at 3820 N. Roosevelt Blvd., showcases mermaid- and ocean-inspired art.
Four events are scheduled Saturday, July 6. The day begins with Breakfast with Mermaids priced from $25-$38 at Southernmost Beach Resort’s Sand Bar, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean at 508 South St., from 8 a.m. to noon. An eco-friendly Mermaid Fest Parade, open and free to all, is to kick off at 11 a.m. and roll down Duval Street to Key West’s Truman Waterfront.
In addition, Salty Saturday at the Truman Waterfront, set for noon to 6 p.m., features ocean- and mermaid-inspired entertainment, vendors and education. An Ocean Blue Party, scheduled 8 p.m. to midnight, is for mermaid-lovers age 21 and older at The Breakfast Club, Too, 610 Greene St., with “mermosas.” Reef Relief is to conduct an “ocean of treasures” silent auction.
Sunday, July 7, brings the beachside Sunday Funday with Mermaids at Lagerheads Beach Bar, 0 Simonton St. Set for noon to 6 p.m., it includes mingling with mermaids and “Captain Shenanigans,” food and drink, face-painting, vendors and music.
Festival information: keywestmermaidfestival.com/2019 or 305-204-4226
Key West visitor information: fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY