a group of people standing in front of a sign
School board members, the superintendent and Sugarloaf School’s leaders celebrate the new elementary wing and the new world record. From left, assistant principal Kevin Walden, school board members Sue Woltanski, Mindy Conn, Darren Horan and John Dick, Superintendent Theresa Axford and Sugarloaf principal Brett Unke.

The Sharks at Sugarloaf School have more than a new elementary wing to celebrate. The school — and surrounding community — hold a new Guinness World Record.

On the morning of May 5, 887 people broke the record for the most people simultaneously performing the ubiquitous “Baby Shark” song and dance that has now been playing on repeat in all 887 people’s heads since the big event.

The event was organized by Ajax Builders to mark the ribbon-cutting of the new elementary wing and to celebrate the school’s mascot. Students, parents, teachers, school board members, sheriff’s deputies, the Key West police chief, firefighters, local military members and more filled the parking lot while wearing shark sunglasses and other chomping costumes for the festivities.

“We did it; we broke the record,” Key West Police Chief Sean Brandenburg declared while still wearing his shark hat. 

An open house and grand opening tours will be available at the new elementary wing in the coming week or so, said principal Brett Unke, who is retiring at the end of the year after 30 years with the school district.

The new elementary wing and the new world record were the perfect way to end his career, Unke said.

Hundreds of adults join the successful record-breaking attempt.
Sugarloaf School students, parents, siblings and community members set a new Guinness World Record for the most people performing the Baby Shark dance at once.
Key West Police Chief Sean Brandenburg and Monroe County Sheriff Rick Ramsay join the Baby Shark festivities. ASHLEY ROBERTS/Contributed
Mandy Miles
Mandy Miles drops stuff, breaks things and falls down more than any adult should. An award-winning writer, reporter and columnist, she's been stringing words together in Key West since 1998. "Local news is crucial," she says. "It informs and connects a community. It prompts conversation. It gets people involved, holds people accountable. The Keys Weekly takes its responsibility seriously. Our owners are raising families in Key West & Marathon. Our writers live in the communities we cover - Key West, Marathon & the Upper Keys. We respect our readers. We question our leaders. We believe in the Florida Keys community. And we like to have a good time." Mandy's married to a saintly — and handy — fishing captain, and can't imagine living anywhere else.