Oh what a month June has been. Stacey and I have been quite busy between family and work, but we’re slowly making our way back out to tour the rest of New Hampshire, and write about our experiences. This past week, we visited Hampton Beach, the beach village that is politically connected to the town of Hampton, but essentially considered its own town, including a different zip code.
While we were there, as we had specifically planned, was the Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Competition, where about ten master sand sculptors from across the United States and Canada get together and create sand sculptures that for the first place winner, receives a prize of $2,000. Definitely a great prize for something that they love to do, and amazes and brings visitors to the area.
But first, let’s take a brief look at the history of how the event started.
In 2000, the United States mint hired Greg Grady to create a massive replica of the new backside of the New Hampshire state quarter that featured the Old Man in the Mountain, to promote and commemorate the state’s most beloved, and now late landmark. He was to create this replica using a mere ten tons of sand during the Hampton Beach Children’s Festival. At the time, no one had seriously considered the though of having a sand sculpting contest. Thankfully for the great marketing abilities of the United States Mint, Greg Grady brought his freelance work as a sand sculptor to a whole new level. This was by inviting other master sand sculptors to compete not only for money, but to out do each other in their art of sand sculpting.
It’s a great thing, because this year is the seventh annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Competition. Currently, a massive 220 tons of sand is brought in to accommodate the competition. Here is how the schedule works:
Fri., June 15
300 tons of imported sand will be delivered to Hampton Beach
Sat., Sun., Mon., June 16, 17, & 18
“Pounding Up” and sponsor site takes shape
Tue. & Wed., June 19 & 20
Master Group Carve on sponsor site
Thurs., Fri., & Sat. 21-22-23
Solo Competition $15,000 purse and entry awards
Thurs., Fri., & Sat. 21-22-23
Free Lesson 1 – 3 p.m. (sign-up required)
Sat., June 23, 1:00 – 4:00 PM
Voting for People’s Choice Award
Sat., June 23 at 8:00 PM
Awards Ceremony on Sea Shell Stage.
But wait a minute, I remember attempting to build sand castles on the beach the many times my family went when I was younger. How can these guys possibly makes those incredible sand sculptures only using sand and water? The key is to spray them with something called a windscreen. A windscreen is a solution of school glue and water, which protects the sand sculptures from the elements of mother nature and remain standing for weeks to come until they are destroyed.
You still have time to check out these sand sculptures on Hampton Beach, as they are available for viewing this week until destruction on July 29. I would recommend (as I have done in years past) to go view the sculptures at night (if you’re staying close by), as you get a different perspective on them.
I visited Hampton Beach early last week as the sand was being delivered, but haven’t had the chance to go back. I’ll try to go down Thursday morning and take some pictures for those that cannot make it there.
Well, I hope this has been an informative post, and I really hope you are close enough to get down to Hampton Beach to take a look at the sculptures, because I believe they will be better than in years past.
Until next time, we’re out.