Tarpon Springs, Florida: Spongeorama
See the movie, wander the museum, and learn about our blobby squishy friend, the natural sponge. Roadsideamerica.com Report... [11/18/2012]
What happens when a deep sea diver ascends too quickly, then spends 45 years in a display at the free Sponge Museum? A photo collage. Roadsideamerica.com Report... [11/18/2012]
Visitor Tips and News About Spongeorama
A museum populated by aging mannequin dioramas that demonstrate random acts of sponginess. Walk through it alone, I dare you; it's scarier than any haunted house.
The first mannequin isn't doing much for women's lib; her job is to display how to deliver a husband's lunch. She is, however, unintentionally missing a hand and partially scalped (though her hipster glasses still make her look pretty).
Soon after there's a display full of... well, it doesn't matter, because I couldn't look past the wooden frame being devoured by termites.
Then there's the famous "Sponge Diver's Nightmare" -- a display of a diver mannequin dying from the bends. But let's be frank, the real "nightmare" is the mannequin's unfortunate fate of being trapped in this museum, slowly deteriorating, with no end to its tragic existence in sight.
This place is fantastic. Run, don't walk, get there now.[Geo, 08/10/2014]
For decades Spongeorama has inspired both fear and fascination among those who visit it. We hope it never changes.
The Spongeorama dioramas are currently closed to the public. We were told some fundraising will be done to refurbish them, and there are hopes they will be reopened within the next year. The movie is still being played, and sponges can be purchased.[Stephanie C., 01/01/2013]
Promotion of the Spongeorama's free video show and museum pulls in tourists to the gift shop and to consider an affiliated evening cruise.
The museum shows indications of both care and neglect. While the head to the little nude diver boatman had been reattached, the Sponge Diver's Nightmare was looking as bad as we'd ever seen it. The plexiglass was more clouded, the lighting dimmer, and boxes of merchandise were piled against the viewing window, as if they'd forgotten this was a museum.
However, it remains a must-see, with plenty of entertaining exhibits on the hazards and rewards of sponge diving.[RoadsideAmerica.com Team, 03/02/2011]