2012 Sand Sculpting Competitions

Watch a sand sculpture competition up close—or try your own hand in the sand at these upcoming events.

Sandcastle Competitions

Matt Deibert perfects his entry at the Siesta Key competition.

Photographer: Michael Hanson

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  • Sandcastle Competitions

    The Art of Sand Castles

    They call themselves sand sculptors—artists who build massive structures on the beach for fun and profit, only to watch their work disappear overnight.


AIA SandCastle Competition
June 2, 2012 Galveston, Texas; aiasandcastle.com

On the first Saturday in June, teams of designers, architects, and engineers storm the East Beach in Galveston to vie for the elusive Gold Bucket Award. Awards are presented in eight different categories from Best Architectural to Most Lifelike.

Cannon Beach Sand Castle Day & Festival
June 8--10, 2012 Cannon Beach, Oregon; cbsandcastle.com

This year will mark Cannon Beach’s 48th annual Sand Castle Day & Festival, which allows both professionals and newbies to join in the fun. The three-day event also has mixers, bonfires, and tons of food and music.

Master Sand Sculpting Competition
June 21--23, 2012 Hampton Beach, New Hampshire; hamptonbeach.org/sandcastle-competition.cfm

With a sponsor site of 200 tons of imported sand, the 15 master builders competing in the Master Sand Sculpting Competition certainly have a bountiful canvas to work with. And with $15,000 in purse and entry awards at stake, this invitation-only event promises to impress.

New Jersey Sandcastle Contest
July 12, 2012 Belmar, New Jersey; njsandcastle.com

Anyone can join in at this annual New Jersey event. Awards are distributed per age group and in day camp and family categories. If you prefer to simply observe the activities, there’s music, giveaways, and food.

East Hampton SandCastle Contest
August 4, 2012 Amagansett, New York; ehsandcastle.com

Participants are divided by age and experience level, with prizes and trophies awarded to the top three in all categories. Presented by local non-profit organization, The Clamshell Foundation, the money raised from the annual events goes to several charities supported by the Foundation.

Clam Harbour Beach Sandcastle Competition
August 19, 2012 Halifax, Nova Scotia; halifax.ca/sandcastle

Once you’re done building, head over to the Family Fun Zone for cool exhibits and hands-on activities. If you just need to relax after a long day of sand-sculpting, enjoy the live music or take a stroll to gaze at the other creations.

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