Dress as your favorite mermaid and, um, walk? in this parade

Tucson's Return of the Mermaids is a family-friendly celebration of fanciful undersea life.

Mermaid fans of all ages will gather in Tucson on Saturday to celebrate the fanciful aquatic creatures, along with other beings that live under the sea.

The annual Return of the Mermaids is held on the second Saturday in August. David Aguirre and Lizzie Mead are co-creators and organizers of the festival, which is also known as the Tucson Mermaid Parade, in honor of the signature event that takes place at 8 p.m. Saturday night.

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The Return of the Mermaids parade is held in Tucson. (Photo: Jeffrey Mead)

“This is a sidewalk parade and anyone can join. It’s fun for the whole family,” Aguirre said, adding that everyone is encouraged to dress up as anything that lives under the sea, including mermaids, octopuses, seahorses, sharks, sea turtles and more.

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Mermaid Lyra reads to youngsters during the Return of the Mermaids in Tucson. (Photo: Return of the Mermaids)

“It turns out that almost everyone has a little mermaid in the family, and Tucson is the only place in the state organizing a mermaid parade. Little mermaids ride in little wagons lined with lights and there are little pirates, big pirates and swarms of umbrella-made jellyfish lit with LED lights,” he said.

In addition to the evening parade, the event features family-friendly activities that start at noon including games, giveaways, and the chance to see mermaids up close.

“Live mermaids will be present to greet families and kids,” Aguirre said.

The Mermaid Market will have face painters, live music, food trucks, belly dancing and more, and Mermaid Odette will be in her grotto as part of the Haggerty Plaza Under the Sea Adventure from 5-8 p.m.

Aguirre said he and Mead have been pleasantly surprised by the popularity of the Return of the Mermaids.

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Anyone going to the Return of the Mermaids in Tucson is invited to dress as a favorite undersea character. (Photo: Return of the Mermaids)

“After our first Return of the Mermaids event, Lizzie and I were surprised at the high turnout. We looked at each other and said, ‘I guess we'll have to do it again next year!’ ” he said, adding that they are now in their fourth year.

“This year, we think even more people will come out for a stroll, in costume to celebrate life under the sea in Tucson.”

Return of the Mermaids

When: Events begin at noon Saturday, Aug. 12. Check website for all activities and locations.

Where: In downtown Tucson and along historic Fourth Avenue.

Admission: Free for parade; check website for other events.

Details:www.returnofthemermaids2017.com.

 

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Article Dress as your favorite mermaid and, um, walk? in this parade compiled by www.azcentral.com