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4.25.2010

a slice of old Florida

I have always been intrigued by old Florida. I'm a Floridian (born and raised) and I love the magic that Florida holds for non-Floridians. The promise of endless sunshine, gorgeous beaches, the happiest place on Earth (Disney World, of course!).

But, there is a forgotten piece of old Florida that out ranks all of this for me.  Just north of Tampa on US 19 sits a relic of Florida that is still standing tall. Weeki Wachee Springs is slice of nostalgia that has been preserved for future generations. Hailed as the world's only city of live mermaids, it beckons tourists away from the all mighty mouse. It promises them a wonderful, if not gimmicky, show full of magic and sights beyond belief. Since 1946 tourists have been coming to Weeki Wachee to marvel at the beautiful mermaids that seem to effortlessly dance without the need for air in the crystal clear spring. A spectacle and a must see for sure!

The draw of old Florida and the magic of such a place is what drew me into my current read, Swim to Me. The book tells the story of a 16-year-old girl who leaves her home in the Bronx for the sunny promise of Florida. After her father walks out on her family, she feels as though she must get out and make a better life for herself. Weeki Wachee seems like the perfect place to do just that after visiting the park on a family vacation the year before. She auditions at Weeki Wachee and gets the job. Now, how will she deal with her new found stardom and what will happen when her family suddenly reunites in a most feared twist of fate? This book is not the most substantial book but it is a good read none the less. I would recommend this for a long drive or a day at the beach. It left me with dreams of old Florida and I am now planning a trip to Weeki Wachee as soon as possible!



1 comment:

Kristin said...

I haven't been there since I was little...but I remember looooving the mermaids!