Weeki Wachee, Florida

Weeki Wachee was a city located in Hernando County, Florida, United States. As of the 2010 census, the former city had a total population of 12.[5] The 12,000-acre (49 km2) Weeki Wachee Preserve and the Weeki Wachee Springs park are located in the area. The park includes water rides, animal shows, mermaid costume shows, and manatee watching. The communities of Weeki Wachee Gardens and Spring Hill are nearby.

Weeki Wachee, Florida
Unincorporated communtiy
US 19, SR 50 and CR 550 intersect at Weeki Wachee Springs and Buccaneer Bay.
Location in Hernando County and the state of Florida
Location in Hernando County and the state of Florida
Weeki Wachee, Florida is located in the United States
Weeki Wachee, Florida
Weeki Wachee, Florida
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 28°30′56″N 82°34′43″W / 28.51556°N 82.57861°W / 28.51556; -82.57861Coordinates: 28°30′56″N 82°34′43″W / 28.51556°N 82.57861°W / 28.51556; -82.57861
CountryUnited States
StateFlorida
CountyHernando
Founded1966
DissolvedJune 2020
Area
 • Total1.05 sq mi (2.73 km2)
 • Land1.00 sq mi (2.60 km2)
 • Water0.05 sq mi (0.13 km2)
Elevation
33 ft (10 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total12
 • Estimate 
(2019)[2]
13
 • Density12.94/sq mi (5.00/km2)
Time zoneUTC−05:00 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC−04:00 (EDT)
Area code(s)352
FIPS code12-75625[3]
GNIS feature ID0295700[4]
Websitewww.weekiwachee.com

HistoryEdit

The city of Weeki Wachee was founded in 1966 to promote the local mermaid attraction. With fewer than 15 residents, and increased concerns over the city's finances, services, and state park operations, state representative Blaise Ingoglia sponsored a bill to dissolve the city, and Governor Ron DeSantis signed it into law in June 2020. Hernando County, Florida, is to resolve the financial issues, and park operations are not expected to be affected.[6]

GeographyEdit

The city of Weeki Wachee was located in western Hernando County at 28°30'56" North, 82°34'43" West (28.515445, −82.578565).[7] Via U.S. Route 19, it was 19 miles (31 km) north of Port Richey and 20 miles (32 km) south of Homosassa Springs. Via Florida State Road 50, Weeki Wachee was 12 miles (19 km) west of Brooksville, the Hernando County seat.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city had a total area of 1.1 square miles (2.8 km2), of which 0.050 square miles (0.13 km2), or 4.68%, was water.[5]

DemographicsEdit

Historical population
Census Pop.
197076
19808−89.5%
199053562.5%
200012−77.4%
2010120.0%
2019 (est.)13[2]8.3%
U.S. Decennial Census[8]

As of the 2000 US Census of 2000, there were 12 people, five households, and five families residing in the city.[3] The population density was 11.8 people per square mile (4.5/km2). There were five housing units at an average density of 4.9 per square mile (1.9/km2). All residents were White, as identified by the census; no one in Weeki Wachee was Hispanic or Latino, although there was one Native American member of the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians Tribe.

There were five households, out of which two had children under the age of 18 living with them, two were married couples living together, three had a female householder with no husband present, and none was a non-family. No households in Weeki Wachee were made up of individuals, and none consisted of someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.40.

In 2000, five city residents were under the age of 18, none were between 18 and 24, two were between 25 and 44, two were between 45 and 64, and three were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every female there was one male. For every five females age 18 and over, there were two males.

The median income for a household in the city was $50,625. Males had a median income of $50,625 versus $0 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,022. Seven of the population and one third of families were below the poverty line. Out of the total population, all of those under the age of 18 and none of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.

Weeki Wachee SpringsEdit

Tourist attractionEdit

Weeki Wachee Springs, the spring of the Weeki Wachee River, is a Florida tourist attraction where underwater performances by mermaids – women dressed in fancy outfits with fins about their legs – can be viewed in an aquarium-like setting. There are currently 15 female mermaid performers and four male performers. The attraction includes a Buccaneer Bay water park, animal shows, and boat rides. General Manager Robyn Anderson is also the town's mayor. The park is now a Florida State Park and is owned and managed by the State Parks department.[9]

Deepest naturally formed spring in the United StatesEdit

From May 22 until August 30, 2007, the discharge level at Weeki Wachee spring dropped to a level that allowed for cave divers to gain effective entry into the cave system at the spring. The Karst Underwater Research team successfully executed exploration dives and the necessary in-water decompression to explore approximately 6,700 feet (2,000 m) in multiple passages at an average depth of 265 feet (81 m) Fresh Water (ffw) with a maximum depth of 407 ffw.[10][11]

In popular mediaEdit

 
Entrance to Weeki Wachee Springs State Park
  • In 2005, English rock band Supergrass filmed the video for their song "Low C" at the Springs. They filmed a short documentary about the spring, their playing at a local bar, and swimming with the mermaids.
  • Canadian rock band The Elwins mention the city in their single "Stuck in the Middle" from their album And I Thank You.
  • Weeki Wachee Springs is featured in Betsy Carter's book Swim to Me, a story about a youth wanting to become a mermaid.[12]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 2, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
  3. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  4. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  5. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Weeki Wachee city, Florida". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved April 26, 2017.[dead link]
  6. ^ Behrendt, Barbara (June 9, 2020). "Weeki Wachee, the city of live mermaids, is no more". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved June 9, 2020.
  7. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  8. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  9. ^ "Florida Springs Guide: Weeki Wachee Springs State Park". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved April 22, 2012.
  10. ^ "Weeki Wachee Spring". karstunderwaterresearch.org. Karst Underwater Research. Retrieved 2008-08-18.
  11. ^ Neill, Logan; Anderson, Joel (2009-04-20). "Cave divers explore deepest parts of Weeki Wachee Springs". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 2009-06-01.
  12. ^ Carter, Betsy (2008). Swim to Me. Bantam Discovery. ISBN 978-03853-3977-3.

External linksEdit