Swim with the fish at Flint RiverQuarium - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Swim with the fish at Flint RiverQuarium

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By Christian Jennings - bio | email

ALBANY,  GA (WALB) - Is scuba diving on your list of things to do, but you can't afford or don't have the time to make a trip to the beach?

Well, you may not have to travel as far as you think. As part of the Flint Riverquarium's 5th birthday celebration this weekend, visitors got the chance to get up close and personal with the fish they can usually only see through a sheet of glass.

Robert Tennille is spending his Labor Day exploring the underwater world. And he didn't have to travel far to do it.

He's taking his first dive in the 175,000 gallon Blue Hole Spring at the Flint RiverQuarium.

"I am excited, it's something new to me," he says.

His wife Judy stands close by as Robert's scuba instructor suits him up for his 22-foot plunge along side fish, turtles, and through the glass, curious spectators.

"It's the first time we've offered this to the general public. We're going to see how the public reacts and see if we want to make it a regular attraction," says Richard Brown, Flint RiverQuarium General Curator.

Robert says the attraction gets his vote, a nice break from his otherwise busy day off.

"We've been cleaning house, so this is a nice break," says Tennille.

On Saturday several divers took advantage of Discover Scuba for only 75 bucks. Robert won the free tour below through a raffle.

"I think people will be surprised how easy it is," said Brown.

Apparently it was an easy swim, once he actually got the suit on.

"It's amazing how hard this thing is to put on, it took about 10 minutes!" laughed Tennille.

By the looks of things, it was time well spent, in exchange for a peaceful day underwater only minutes away from home.

The scuba instructors are volunteer divers that help with the Flint RiverQuarium's maintenance. They also do dive shows on the weekend's at 2 p.m.


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