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According to a recent News 13 article from Orlando, Florida, there are many online forums and articles claiming that it is unlawful to park your elephant in a metered parking space in Florida without paying the parking meter fee. In fact, more than a dozen websites list this funny law as the weirdest law on Florida's books. The websites say that owners of elephants are not exempt from parking meter fees and they could come back to their elephant with a ticket stuck to its trunk.

Was This Law for the Circus?

Some theorize that the law may have -- at one time -- existed in Florida several decades ago. However, it is believed that the law comes from Sarasota, Florida, which used to be the home of John Ringling from Ringling Bros. Circus. Ringling Bros. moved the winter operations of their circus to Sarasota, Florida, in 1927.

Before he moved his company to Florida, though, in 1917 Ringling bought St. Armand's Key. According to Florida history, Ringling used trained elephants to assist in the building of a causeway to St. Armand's Circle, which has since become a popular place to visit on Sarasota's tourist circuit.

It was not long after Ringling moved to Florida that parking meters became more and more popular throughout the country in the 1930s. Could it be that Ringling and his elephants were such a prominent fixture of old Sarasota that the elephant traffic needed to be regulated just as much as automobiles? We may never know the answer to this question.

Orlando Police Say No Such Law Exists

According to Ryan Harper of Orlando's News 13, he asked a representative from the Orlando Police Department about the elephant parking law. The department performed a detailed search through the Florida law books, and found that no law has existed over the last five years that requires elephant drivers to pay their parking meter fees and they will not get hit with a traffic citation. So, next time you are driving your elephant into town, don't worry about paying the meter. Apparently, elephants get free parking in the state of Florida!