Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sand sculpting in VA Beach

The first days here we watched the sand sculptors as they made their creations. They were right outside our window. Normally, they work on Thursday before the Neptune Festival but that day was way too windy and so the sculpting was done on Sunday and we had a front seat view.

I found out that there are two categories, one amateur and one professional. Big difference and not just in the results, some of the amateurs were almost as good as the professionals. The help was the big difference. One of the ingredients for a sand sculpture in addition to sand is water. The water (ocean) is near but for the professionals, it is piped in from the ocean (including sand) to the location near the boardwalk. The amateurs need to carry water in buckets by themselves. The pile of sand is made by hand digging the sand with shovels. One very clever group in the amateur division built a pipe line with a big ladder and funnel in to a plastic pipe that went to their area. They needed to bring the buckets up the ladder to their pipe so the water could flow down to the site. If you look closely you can see the various parts of the procedure happening.

The amateurs had lots of group help, carrying water, digging and piling sand. Then someone took over with the actual sculpting. That is rather specialized. I can hear the meeting announcement now, “All report to the beach on Sunday for sand sculpting duty!”
You’ll notice many other “boardwalk superintendents” watching. Our view was much better!

We noticed that most of the amateurs were architects. One, Parsons Brinkerhoff was one of the architects for Boston’s Big Dig. (I’ll make no editorial comments other than to point it out.)

Here are some of the professional sculptures.

One of my favorites is Calvin and Hobbes. The other a favorite old Sunday School song about the Foolish man building his house upon the sand.



  1. We have sand castle competitions where I live too! They are amazing to see.

  2. Sistren Bev,

    Is this where you met Leslie?

    Bless Up,
    Lady Roots