In New Brunswick, New Jersey in 1913, a con man named Harrison Floy and his shill, Mr. Pontdue, target the Longstreet family, consisting of Mama, Papa, Mama's younger sister Fran, and Fran's college boyfriend Oggle. Floy pitches "snake-oil" schemes ("He Tried to Make a Dollar") including selling fake watches and diamond mines, and the shill Mr. Pontdue asks for two. After cheating the Longstreets in a phony land deal, Floy and Pontdue escape to Atlantic City, bringing their ill-gotten profits and Fran, who has become romantically involved with Floy.
The victims pursue Fran and the con men, leading to a wild goose chase through the cabanas of Atlantic City's beach. In an uproarious dance sequence, Floy, Pontdue, the Longstreets, various sunbathers, and even a bikini-clad gorilla chase each other frantically, alternately clutching a satchel full of stolen money ("The Bathing Beauty Ballet"). The Keystone Cops arrive to sort things out, but Floy loses everything when he bets on the wrong football team. Somehow, everything works out in the end.
(2 female; 5 male)
Sarah Longstreet (Mama)
Fran (Mama’s Sister)
Oggle (Hubert Ogglethorpe)
Townspeople, Football Players, Ladies' Bird Watching Society, Singers and Dancers