With the 2022 Mermaid Capital of Texas Festival set for Saturday, Mermaid Society SMTX unveiled the Royal Court on Wednesday.
Texas State University President Dr. Kelly Damphousse was named 2022 Mermaid Promenade Grand Marshal. Dr. Kimberly Meitzen, associate professor, Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at Texas State University, is the 2022 Mermaid Queen. San Marcos Consolidated ISD Superintendent Dr. Michael Cardona is this year’s King of SPLASH. Susan Carper Hanson, underwater photographer of the San Marcos River and San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance board member, is the 2022 Arts & Culture Honoree. Todd Derkacz, San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance Trail crew leader, is the 2022 River Guardianship honoree. La Sociadad Mutualista Cuauhtémoc is this year’s Heritage Honoree.
“The honorees selected are individuals whose actions and principles reflect those of the Mermaid Society and contribute to the vibrancy of San Marcos,” Mermaid Society SMTX said in its announcement.
The sixth annual Mermaid Capital of Texas Fest will take place Saturday with the Mermaid Promenade traversing the streets of Downtown San Marcos from 10 am-12 pm The annual parade will be followed by the downtown street faire between noon and 7 pm
The promenade and street faire will feature a wide array of dancers — Polynesian dance, Korean dance, belly dancers and Aztec dancers — as well as live music, according to Mermaid Society SMTX Executive Director and Founder July Moreno. She added that those planning to attend can expect a joyful event.
“I mean, who doesn’t love mermaids? It’s just such a fun thing,” Moreno told the Daily Record in a previous interview. “It’s very positive. It’s a very family-friendly event. So, I think that’s definitely something people can look forward to… I think what they can expect is something very unusual, and I think that’s what makes it unique to San Marcos. Nowhere else are you going to see this. It’s right in San Marcos and you have to be here to see it.”
This year’s Mermaid Capital of Texas Fest events come after San Marcos was given the designation in 2021 by the Gov. Greg Abbott and the 87th Texas Legislature. Moreno said they’ve been able to have fun with the Mermaid Capital designation.
“This whole festival has been designed to be an identity-destination event,” Moreno said. “Before, it was called the Mermaid Splash. Now, it’s officially called the Mermaid Capital of Texas Fest. We want people to come out. We want people to come visit our city. See how beautiful our river is and get to know our city. They may come for the parade but hopefully they come back to stay longer and visit and really invest in our community.”