Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Mermaids at the Beach

This past weekend we made a last minute trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. I had read in The Charlotte Observer that there would be a live mermaid show at the Ripley's Aquarium for the August 1st-3rd weekend only. The mermaids, from Weeki Wachee Springs, FL, performed on the road for the first time in the 61 year history of the mermaid show attraction. Well, Little Man has been very into mermaids, and was disappointed that he and his cousin had not spotted any on our beach vacation back in June. So, when I mentioned it to Hubby and some co-workers, the consensus was that, if we could, we needed to try to make it to one of the shows. So Friday evening I booked a room at Compass Cove Resort on the Grand Strand, and Saturday morning we finished packing and hit the road. We arrived late afternoon, checked in, changed and headed straight for the beach. Then we went to one of the 22 indoor and outdoor pools, hot tubs, kiddie pools and lazy rivers that the resort offers. First was the kiddie pool with the submarine that the kids could play in. Then the lazy river, then the hot tub (and a 5 minute sit in the sauna for me), and then after hours of playing, we headed back to the room to clean-up for dinner. We went to the Giant Crab which is an excellent buffet with great fish tanks (Little Man loves the Nemos) and out of this world food...including our required Myrtle Beach food...crab legs. Afterwards we went back to the hotel and sat on the balcony before going to bed.

The next morning Little Man woke up at 6:45 AM to go potty. Afterwards we got dressed, went downstairs for breakfast at the hotel restaurant, and then headed back to the room to change into our bathing suits. We went down to the beach for an hour where the water was as fantastic as the day before and the sun was peaking from the clouds in a way that made both Hubby and I stare at it feeling like an angel was shining down on us. It made the hair stand up on my arms, the image of the clouds with the light was so hauntingly made me wonder if my Pop was looking down on us. Meanwhile, Little Man enjoyed digging in the sand and splashing in the water (which was great since the day before he had lost a plastic cup in the ocean and was too scared to go in the water the rest of the day for fear he would lose something else). At 9 AM the pools opened and we left the beach, taking one more good sea air breath before packing up the beach toys. Hubby took the buckets to the car and Little Man and I headed to the kiddie pool where we spent another great 45 minutes running around and getting drenched (and yes, it was warm enough already that it wasn't chilly). After that we rode the lazy river again, and sat in the hot tub, and THEN played in one of the indoor pools (where Little Man practiced jumping in and swimming), and then we headed back at 10:30 to the room to get changed. By 10:50 we were out the door and the car was packed.

From the hotel we headed to the aquarium where we bought tickets, walked in, and Little Man got right up to have his photo taken with one of the mermaids. Then we battled the crowd of people to find a spot from which to watch the mermaid show. We waited about 10 minutes, during which a pirate led sing-a-long songs, and then the show began. Little Man was mesmerized. He loved the blue mermaid because he said she looked like Ariel. As the 15-minute show progressed people left so the end was more enjoyable than the beginning...but since the show wasn't extra, I felt it was a great opportunity, especially since we love the Ripley's Aquarium to begin with. They have a great pirate exhibit right now, which is entertaining and educational...and they have a reef with a clear tunnel throughout that has a moving walkway you stand on that takes you under and to the side of hungry looking sharks and eels, amongst other sea creatures.

After the show ended we went to the beginning of the aquarium and worked our way through, with Little Man just as fascinated by what he was seeing as he was the first time he had been to an aquarium. We had a great time. Then, before hitting the road we had lunch there overlooking the sharks! We enjoyed a great last minute trip, and Little Man got to meet a mermaid!

1 comment:

Connie said...

Looks fun! I can't believe those mermaids are swimming with those sting rays!