How Many Mermaids Can You Count in This Photo?

The answer is 14. 


Embrace, St. Mary’s mermaid statue, is surrounded by 13 members of the Ocean View Women’s Golf Association, who call themselves the “Ocean View Mermaids.” Also in the photo is Mary Helen Hilton, St. Mary’s director of annual giving (seventh person from the left, standing).


For three years in a row, the Ocean View Women’s Golf Association has supported the nonprofit St. Mary’s Home with a golf tournament. Members visited the Home today to donate $2,500 from the proceeds of this year’s tournament. 


“We know that a lot of work goes into the tournament,” Hilton said as she and Martha Price Stewart, St. Mary’s director of development, greeted the group. “It just means a lot to the care care of our children. It really touches the heart. Thank you.”

Martha Price Stewart, St. Mary’s director of development, (left) and Mary Helen Hilton, director of annual giving, (center), stand in front of the donor tree in St. Mary’s lobby as they accept a donation to the Home presented by Sally Corliss, chair of the Ocean View Women’s Golf Association’s tournament. “It’s because of donations like this that we can go the extra mile” for the children, Stewart told the group. 


Donor Spotlight: The Mermaids Meet the Mermaid

The Ocean View Mermaids pose with Mary Helen Hilton, St. Mary’s director of annual giving, fourth from left, next to St. Mary’s new mermaid statue.

For two years in a row, the Ocean View Women’s Golf Association has supported St. Mary’s Home by, naturally, golfing. More than 100 people took part in the group’s golf tournament last summer, and the association recently donated $2,500 from the proceeds to the Home. During a visit to St. Mary’s, members of the group — who call themselves the “Ocean View Mermaids” — posed with St. Mary’s new mermaid statue.

The Mermaid is Coming to St. Mary’s

St. Mary’s mermaid is almost here. In fact, she will arrive on Monday.

But … she needs a name.

Come up with the perfect moniker for this lovely creature of the sea and you’ll win a copy of “There Goes a Mermaid!” by Norfolk author Lisa Suhay and a St. Mary’s tote bag filled with goodies.

Fill out a ballot at St. Mary’s front desk, or send an email with your name, address, phone number and suggested name for the mermaid to sbarisic@smhdc.org. Deadline is end of the day, Sunday, Nov. 8. The winning name will be announced during the Family Forum at St. Mary’s Home on Tuesday, Nov. 10, 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Employees, families, friends, supporters — everyone is invited to name the mermaid.

To learn more about the mermaid, click here.

Making Mermaid Magic


Jahmari and Amelia took a field trip today to help make a mermaid. With paintbrushes and rollers — and a little help from Amelia’s mother and staff from St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children — they dabbed blue paint on the tail of one of Norfolk’s newest mermaid statues, which is going to be displayed at the Home.
“The kids are going to put their magic into it,” said artist Georgia Mason, who is creating the mermaid. She invited St. Mary’s children to come out to her home studio so they could see the mermaid in progress and lend a hand.
What does a mermaid have to do with St. Mary’s Home?
Norfolk is dotted with mermaid statues shaped like the city’s mermaid symbol, which is 10 years old. The city is now celebrating the Year of the Mermaid, which kicked off with a party at St. Mary’s earlier this month, including the reading of a mayoral proclamation honoring the Home. The event also celebrated the release of a new, special anniversary edition of Lisa Suhay‘s children’s book about Norfolk’s mermaids, “There Goes a Mermaid!” Suhay is donating part of the proceeds to the Home and to The Virginian-Pilot’s Joy Fund.

But the children of St. Mary’s didn’t have a mermaid to call their own. Carl Albero, a member of St. Mary’s Board, bid $5,000 at a fundraiser auction earlier this year to get them a mermaid, and one of his granddaughters also helped paint the mermaid today. Mason is using just part of the mermaid money to pay for materials; the rest will go to support the nonprofit Home because Mason is donating her time and talent to the project.

Stay tuned for updates on the mermaid.
WAVY-TV 10 ran a story about the mermaid field trip on its 5:30 p.m. newscast today. If you didn’t happen to catch it, below you can watch our own video of Amelia, Jahmari and helpers working on the mermaid: