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Top Ten Places to See Sandcastles | Suntan Fun

Who says sandcastles are just for kids? All across this country people these sandcastle competitions are going on and we have located ten beaches that are known for their sand art competitions. The skill and craftsmanship is amazing! If you have never attended you don’t know what you’re missing!


1. One of the earliest competitions in the year was TexasSandFest held in Port Aransas, TX held for three days. There are group competitions, individual by age, as well as, sculpting masters. This is a family oriented competition providing sun, sand and the beautiful waters of the Gulf. About a hundred vendors are set up to serve your wants and needs with a variety of products. Please see our event calendar to see when the Texas Sand Fest will be.


2. The first and oldest sand art competition in the United States is in Cannon Beach, OR. Known as Sandcastle Day it attracts many ‘Sand Masters’ who travel around the country from event to event. The 45th Sandcastle Day was held this year on June 13 and was open to many age groups. It is a family affair and the community comes out to support it each year. You have 12 hours to complete your sculpture before the tide comes in and Neptune claims it for his own. The beach is only two blocks from downtown so those who don’t participate can check out the restaurants or many shops, in between watching the artists at work. Remember the special day is June 19, 2010, check it out.


3. The New England Sand Sculpting Festival at Revere Beach, MA was held July 16-18 this year. As seems to be common with these events, this competition exists to provide funding for beach beautification, restoration, water protection and protection of the historical significance of the area. This competition attracts over 250,000 viewers with local and media coverage. The sculptors are given 10 tons of sand each in an area 18’ by 18’ and specific hours in which to work. Only water, sand and forms are allowed to form the sculptures and the results are amazing!


4. The Annual SandStations Sandcastle Competition was held in Long Beach Peninsula, WA on July 17th and 18th of this year. The first day is meet and greet with master sand sculptors sharing secrets of the art. The second day is when the actual competition begins with 5 categories available from Masters to Children so anyone can enter. Free hot dogs were offered all day but if that does not tantalize your taste buds there are many restaurants from eclectic to regional cuisine with something for everyone. The tides dictate the time allowed so they have only five hours so don’t wander too far or you’ll miss the results.


5. On July 19th in Imperial Beach, CA, the 29th U.S. Open Sandcastle Competition was held. Yes, there is prize money and professional teams as well as regular folk compete. This year the top prize was $5,000. This event covers a whole weekend which includes a street fair with live entertainers and more than 140 vendors. This year’s attendance hovered around 350,000 and a portion of the proceeds went to the Boys and Girls Club of Imperial Beach. Considered the most southwesterly city in the United States it has a reputation as a classic southern California town.


6. For the 70th year the Minneapolis Aquatennial in Minneapolis, MN was kicked off July 17th and ended July 25th with the bang of fireworks! On July 19th the novices and masters gathered to compete in 4 categories of the Land O’Lakes Sandcastle Competition. This event is held at Thomas Beach on Lake Calhoun one of a chain of lakes in Minneapolis. There is plenty to keep you busy and happy while the fabulous sculptures are being created!


7. The 28th Annual Sand Sculpture Contest is held yearly in Point Reyes National Seashore, CA and will be on Sunday, September 6 this year. This is a family oriented event.


8. The Virginia Beach Neptune Festival held in Virginia Beach, VA, is a 5 month long series of events culminating September 25 – 27 in the Boardwalk Weekend. The North American Sandsculpting Championship is held on the beach between 6th and 12th Streets and attracts over 300 competitors from all over the world. It also attracts about 500,000 visitors and is considered one of the top ten festivals on the East Coast. There are a number of other events in addition to sand sculpting with a parade, surfing competition, sailing regatta and fireworks. Plenty to enjoy this weekend in happenin’ Virginia Beach!


9. The 22nd Annual SPI Sand Castle Days will be held October 15-18 this year. The SPI is South Padre Island, TX where professional and novice sand sculptors from all over the world participate in this not-for-profit event. The first two days are reserved for the Masters but on the third day the families and novices join in. Proceeds go to various preservation and restoration focused groups, such as Sea Turtles, Inc. and Adopt A Beach. There will be plenty of vendors for time when you’re not watching the sculpting. Now this time of year is chilly up North, so why not head south and join in the fun fest on this beautiful Gulf beach.


10. Ft. Myers Beach, FL is the place to be November3-8 for the 23rd Annual Sandsculpting Championship and Beach Festival. This competition attracts not only Northerners wanting a little warmth but also Masters from all over the globe. Competition is on the beach in front of three different hotels with groups and amateurs welcome. This includes the Florida State Championship as well. The Sand Magic Village is the place for art and food vendors with demonstrations and beach barbeques adding to the fun. The beautiful Gulf waters and soft sand are waiting!




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