Mermaid Trainer Bonnie Georgiadis Displaying Proper Form for 6 Trainees


Dublin Core


Mermaid Trainer Bonnie Georgiadis Displaying Proper Form for 6 Trainees

Alternative Title

Bonnie Georgiadis Training Six Mermaids on Proper Form, c.1960s


Weeki Wachee Springs (Fla.)
tourism & museum
Mermaids--Florida--Weeki Wachee--History
Theater--20th century


Mermaid Trainer Bonnie Georgiadis training six mermaids on proper form of a position for a publicity photo. Bonnie Georgiadis worked at Weeki Wachee for a total of 37 years. 13 years as a mermaid and trainer, 7 as a show producer and choreographer, and the rest of her time at the park as the bird department's manager.

Along with a group of investors, Newton Perry opened Weeki Wachee Springs to the public in October of 1947. At the time, roadside attractions were becoming popular stops along Florida roadways. The attraction consisted of an amalgamation of vendors, an orchid garden, a river boat tour, as well as the star attraction: a mermaid show that took place in an underwater theater. Eventually, the May Museum of the Tropics, an "abandoned Seminole village", a show called “Birds of Prey”, and a petting zoo were added. After peaking in the 1950s and 1960s, attendance began to decline as theme parks and highways changed the dynamics of Florida's tourism. The State of Florida took over the attraction as a state park in 2008. Since then, the park has focused on appealing to a modern audience while preserving its history.




Weeki Wachee Spring State Park


Original sepia tone photogrpah of Bonnie Georgiadis and Trainees, c. 1960s: Private Collection of Sharon Cihak Elliot.


Date Created

ca. 1960-1970

Date Copyrighted

ca. 1960-1970

Is Format Of

Digital Reproduction of photograph: Bonnie Georgiadis and Trainees, c. 1960s. Scanned by RICHES Team. RICHES, Orlando, Florida.

Is Part Of




2.61 MB


B&W Photograph


Still Image


Weeki Wachee Springs State Park, Spring Hill, Florida

Accrual Method



History Teacher
Humanitites Teacher
Visual Arts Teacher
Theater Teacher


Originally created by Weeki Wachee Springs, owned by Sharon Cihak Elliot, and published by RICHES.

Rights Holder

Copyright to this resource is held by Sharon Cihak Elliot and is provided here by RICHES for educational purposes only.

Contributing Project

Florida Humanities Council Community Grant Program and Friends of Weeki Wachee Springs State Park


Schwandt, Rebecca

Digital Collection

Source Repository

Private Collection of Sharon Cihak Elliot.

External Reference

Allman, T.D. Finding Florida: The True History of the Sunshine State. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 2013.
Ammidown, Margot. “Edens, Underworlds, and Shrines: Florida’s Small Tourist Attractions.” The Journal of Decorative and Propaganda Arts 23, (1998): 238-259.
Georgiadis, Bonnie and Lu Vickers. Weeki Wachee Mermaids. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2012.
Hollis, Tim. Glass Bottom Boats and Mermaid Tails: Florida’s Tourist Springs. Mechanicsburg: Stackpole Books, 2006.
Pelland, Dan and Maryan Pelland. Images of America: Weeki Wachee. Mount Pleasant: Arcadia Publishing, 2006.
Revels, Tracy J. Sunshine Paradise: A History of Florida Tourism. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2011.
Vickers, Lu. Weeki Wachee City of Mermaids: A History of One of Florida’s Oldest Roadside Attractions. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2007.


Weeki Wachee Spring State Park, “Mermaid Trainer Bonnie Georgiadis Displaying Proper Form for 6 Trainees,” RICHES, accessed May 21, 2024,