10 Bizarre Underwater Events

1Underwater Pumpkin Carving

It might sound like a weird event, but underwater pumpkin carving is pretty common in the US, with several competitions being organized in Florida, South Carolina, Lake Tahoe or Pennsylvania. Contestants put on their diving gear and drop down to a depth of less than 30 feet, where they try to carve the most intricate jack-o'lanters, and claim the top spots. All the gear is supplied by the organizers, so contestants need only to bring their talent and inspiration.

While it may sound like a fun thing to do, carving a pumpkin underwater is a pretty difficult task, considering the buoyancy of the pumpkin (at least until you cut the lid off) and Newton's third law of motion (for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction).

2500-Guest Underwater Dining

TV presenter Adrian Chiles joined 500 others to help break the world record for the largest sub-aqua dinner party. The Guinness Book of Records is set to confirm exactly how many guests sat down to the gourmet meal of smoked salmon, vegetables and toffee apple. Wearing dinner jackets and ball gowns, diners indulged in their three-course meal at the outdoor swimming pool at The Park Club in Acton, west London. The food – which was served to sittings of about 20 people every 20 minutes – was prepared in jelly to stop it from disintegrating in the wáter.

How does one eat food underwater? First you remove the aqua lung from your mouth, then pop in the food, replace the aqua lung in your mouth and press the button on the aqua lung to purge away the water in your mouth and start breathing again. All participants were guided on how to use an aqua lung and breathe underwater by specialist diving instructors. The event raised more than £200,000 ($400,000) for charities including Save the Children, The Shooting Star Hospice, Breakthrough Breast Cancer and The British Heart Foundation.

3Cabinet Underwater Meeting

In 2009, members of the Maldives' Cabinet donned scuba gear and used hand signals at an underwater meeting staged to highlight the threat of global warming to the lowest-lying nation on earth.President Mohammed Nasheed and 13 other government officials submerged and took their seats at a table on the sea floor — 20 feet below the surface of a lagoon off Girifushi, an island usually used for military training.

With a backdrop of coral, the meeting was a bid to draw attention to fears that rising sea levels caused by the melting of polar ice caps could swamp this Indian Ocean archipelago within a century. Its islands average 7 feet above sea level.As bubbles floated up from their face masks, the president, vice president, Cabinet secretary and 11 ministers signed a document calling on all countries to cut their carbon dioxide emissions.

4Underwater Music Festival

Visitors to this concert might well have thought something fishy was going on when they saw the musicians put on their wet suits and take their instruments into the ocean. However, this was no ordinary gig. More than 500 divers and snorkellers descended on the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary for the 27th Underwater Music Festival. Donning marine-themed fancy dress and adopting stage names such as Eel-vis Presley, Bob Marlin and Joss Stone Crab, the would-be musicians submerged themselves under water to perform in the symphony under the sea. Armed with fishy instruments such as ‘clambourines', guitars in the shape of a starfish and a bass masquerading as a ray, they belted out tunes, creating good vibrations for the surrounding marine life. The wacky event is staged to celebrate the colourful diversity of marine life that characterises north America's only living coral barrier reef – and also promotes preservation. Bill Becker, festival director, told CBS: ‘We have a lot of fun, we dress up in costumes, but there's a serious side. Coral reef conservation is the message.

5Underwater Card Gaming

These scuba divers are claiming a new world record after playing the same card game underwater for 36 hours. The 16 divers – who worked in shifts so they could change oxygen tanks – sat on the bottom of a pool in Geiselhoering, Germany, playing a favourite local game called ‘sheepshead'. Organiser Eric Schlegelmilch said: ‘We gave up counting who owed what after an hour. We didn't want anyone going belly up.' Now the group plan to contact Guinness World Records officials with a video record of their stunt.

6Underwater Tennis Match

What, you didn't know sharks could play tennis? It turns out, as this picture proves, that they absolutely love the game, especially when the opposition doubles as lunch. In actual fact, the man taking his serve isn't merely wacky shark bait, but a very brave man testing Dunlop's new Biomimetic tennis range at the London Aquarium. The thinking behind the stunt was that since Dunlop's new Aeroskin racket was inspired by sharkskin, it'd be a great idea to plonk someone in a tank with Jaws' cousin and see how he got on, specifically, to see how much drag the racket produced. We hear he survived to tell the tale, but weren't told what the score was.

7Underwater Wedding

April Pignataro and Michael Curry of New York City got married in June 2010. The bride wore a white wetsuit and the groom wore a traditional black wetsuit as they climbed inside a 120,000 gallon shark tank to take their vows at Atlantis Marine World in Riverhead, N.Y. Both are experienced divers and were protected by a cage as sand sharks, nurse sharks, eels and a giant grouper circled around. They wore scuba gear and mikes that broadcast their words to each other, as well as to friends and family. They said their “I dos” over a radio transmitter with an officiant who did not get in the tank.

8Underwater Hockey Gaming

A little known sport, underwater hockey is what some divers like to do during the winter months when the outside water is too cold for diving. The sport was invented in Great Britain during the 1950's when some British divers were looking for ways to stay fit during the winter.

The game is played using nothing more than snorkeling equipment - and of course the stick, protective gear and gloves - which adds breathing as an important game factor, meaning players have to manage the oxygen in their body. The game is played at the bottom of the pool using a puck weighing over one kilogram. The sport is tough and tiring though it is not as bad for experienced divers capable of holding their breath for extensive periods of time. The sport is becoming increasingly popular around the world and some countries have formed national teams which take part in world championships.

9Underwater Sword Swallowing

On Friday, May 18, 2007, sword swallower Dan Meyer made history by being the first person in America to swallow a solid steel sword while submerged underwater in a tank of live sharks and stingrays at Ripley's Aquarium in Myrtle Beach, SC. Sponsored by Ripley's Believe It or Not, the underwater event was designed to promote Ripley's Aquarium's "Pirates, Predators of the Sea" exhibit.

To stretch the boundaries of the art, Meyer swallowed a 30-inch long solid steel sword while submerged 15 feet underwater surrounded by more than 80 sharks and stingrays in 85,000 gallons of salt water.

10Underwater Dancing

Seventy-four scuba divers dance to set the world record for an underwater dance class at Sydney's Olympic Park Aquatic Centre October 27, 2006. The divers were required to dance simultaneously for ten minutes to set the record, with the event also raising money for charity.