Vintage Roadside: Do you remember how you first heard of the Aquarama?
Marion: Liz Nelson was a good friend and she encouraged me to audition. I was a year younger. Liz lived close to me and drove a big, white Blazer type machine called a Scout but it had a special nickname. We drove to Eldon a lot in the big Scout because it was the place to shop. Very little shopping at the lake. Sometimes we drove to Jefferson City...that was a BIG trip for a little girl from the lake.
Marion 4th from right and Liz 3rd from right. Photo courtesy of Marc
Vintage Roadside: Did you know any of the others from the cast that summer?
Marion: Yes, Liz, Mary, Alice and Michelle. Michelle was a year younger and her brother Bob and I were an item for a short time in high school.
Vintage Roadside: Did you have any water training or experience before the Aquarama?
Marion: Yes, I had lifeguard certification.
Vintage Roadside: It seems everyone who performed at the Aquarama had a favorite routine. What was yours?
Marion: Eating the banana underwater - it was a challenge! I also liked the clown outfit.
Vintage Roadside: A vote for the clown outfit! If you had to choose another favorite which would you go with?
Marion: Besides the clown outfit, the white go-go outfit was awesome.
Vintage Roadside: We've heard stories from most of the Aquamaids that it was a bit of a battle to keep their hair in good shape. Any memories of the effects on your hair?
Marion: I have curly hair and it did a drying number on my hair. But I was young...what the heck, I wasn't worried at the time.
Please note the photo above is a few years after the Aquarama, but we love it and Marion was kind enough to let us post it on the blog. Thanks again Marion! :-)
Vintage Roadside: Any memories of things not going exactly as planned in the performance?
Marion: We liked to pinch the air hose and cut off oxygen and watch each other squirm.
Vintage Roadside: Ah, practical jokes! Any others you remember?
Marion: If I remember correctly, we used to place small buckets of water on top of the door so they would fall over and get you all wet after the show. If memory serves me correctly we did something to Mary one night. Mary was very pretty and always looked perfect before she left the show. One night we got her all wet. She was pretty mad because she had a date that night.
Vintage Roadside: Do you remember Nola Johl?
Marion: Nola was bigger than life. I was in awe of her.
Vintage Roadside: How did your next job compare with being a mermaid?
Marion: Nothing compares to being a mermaid. It was the best job in the world!!!! It was the closest thing to being in "Show Biz".
Vintage Roadside: Not many people can say they were a real-life mermaid. Do you still think about those times?
Marion: I do professional development for teachers and my favorite creation and Powerpoint presentation is called "Don't Judge a Mermaid by the Color of Her Fin." It's about at-risk kids and their special needs. I presented this district wide last month.
Vintage Roadside: When we first talked you mentioned that you had a team leader name that gave a nod to your time at the Aquarama. What was that again?
Marion: At school, they call me "the Mermaid."
Vintage Roadside: Thanks again Marion, it was wonderful to hear about your time at the Aquarama!
Do you have memories of the Aquarama? If so we'd love to hear from you! Click here for our contact form.
Jeff & Kelly