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News / Life / Clark County Life

Freedom in fins: Northwest merfolk make magic with imaginative play

Finfolk offering fun at events while also finding serenity

By Monika Spykerman, Columbian staff writer
Published: October 21, 2023, 6:13am
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Jessica Thiessen, aka Luna Fortuna, identifies as Black and Indigenous. She says that anyone can be a mermaid -- just embrace your magic.
Jessica Thiessen, aka Luna Fortuna, identifies as Black and Indigenous. She says that anyone can be a mermaid -- just embrace your magic. (Contributed photo) Photo Gallery

An estimated 1,000 people in the United States are “professional mermaids” — that is, they don fishtails and fins and get paid to swim in tanks, pools and open water. These mermaids swim even in landlocked states like Arkansas, Arizona and Kansas. You can go to mermaid school in Iowa or Nevada or board a mermaid cruise ship in Florida.

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