Baton Rouge 'Mermaid' makes a big splash in local pools

Photo provided by staff.
Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 4:17pm

I don't be surprised if you're in a Baton Rouge area pool, and you bump into a "mermaid". Vanessa Lewis is turning heads as she splashes into pools across the Capitol City.

It’s just like any other pool on a hot summer day filled with kids, playing and splashing around. But wait, it might not be just the kids trying to beat the heat.

"I have made such a splash so to speak."

Vanessa Lewis is splashing around town with her new custom made mermaid tail.

"The tail is quite heavy and I was worried I was going to drown when I first put it on."

This tail that set her back nearly 500 dollars is catching everyone's attention.

"I am pretty excited about it and my kids think it's really cool as well," noted Lewis.

Although her son Layden says he doesn't like mermaids.

His mom's new hobby has its perks.

"I like it because she gets to take me to water parks," said Vanessa’s

But really, why?

"I’ve always been enchanted by little mermaid very since I was a little girl the beauty the myth the folklore surrounding mermaids."

A lot of little girls like the little mermaid too.

So the question remains, why is this mother of two, a wife and LSU professor, dressing up like a mythical creature?

"Because she likes mermaids,” said her son Layden.

"I wondered what it would be like to swimming a mermaid tail so I found a guy online a few years ago who crafts these custom mermaid tails for fashion magazines. They have been featured in music videos."

And eventually, Lewis says she wants to use her hobby to not only bring smiles to little ones faces, but to give back in a special way.

"One thing I thought would be a unique outlet would be if I could promote Louisiana conservation coastal preservation, Louisiana waterways and sportsman paradise."

The inside of the tail is made of the same fabric used in a wet suit. Right now Vanessa is making free appearances around town -- but she's considering 'charging' people for her appearances in the future.
 

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