Concert for Coral Reef Awareness Dives Into the Sea

Jul 14, 2023

Summer is a time when lots of outdoor concerts happen in the US. These are usually in places like music halls or city squares where you can set up chairs or lay on a blanket and listen. But in the Florida Keys, a concert happened in a very special place — underwater.   

Hundreds of divers and snorkelers took part in the Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival. The event was designed to bring attention to Florida’s endangered coral reefs. It also highlighted eco-conscious diving. It took place at Looe Key Reef. This is an area of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary that is about 6 miles south of Big Pine Key.

The sanctuary was started in 1990. Its job is to protect 3,800 square miles of water. This includes a long barrier reef that runs along the 125-mile line of islands.  

A radio station in Florida played music that was sent down to the people underwater through waterproof speakers. They were hanging from boats floating above the reef. They played songs like Yellow Submarine by the Beatles, Fins by Jimmy Buffet, and the theme song from Disney’s The Little Mermaid movie.

Some divers dressed as mermaids or other sea creatures. Some even had harps to make it look like they were playing during the four-hour event. 

In between songs, there were messages about why it's important to save the coral reefs. The reefs have been described as the rainforests of the sea. They play an important role in our ecosystem. They give animals a home, a place to have babies, and protection from predators. Some of these creatures are facing possible extinction. Florida is home to the only living reef in the US.    

Photo by Francesco Ungaro courtesy of Unsplash. 

Reflect: If you were to bring attention to an important issue, what would it be and how would you do it?

What is the main message of the underwater festival in the Florida Keys? (Common Core RI.5.2; RI.6.2)
a. The festival is a fun event where people dress up and listen to music underwater.
b. The festival aims to teach people about the importance of taking care of the ocean and its coral reefs.
c. The festival brings together musicians from different parts of the world to perform underwater.
d. The festival is a unique way to enjoy summer and experience underwater adventures.
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