Tag Archives: Revere

Revere Beach International Sand Sculpting Festival (Revere Beach, Revere, MA)

Dates Of Event: July 26-28, 2019 (the event is usually held annually during the last weekend of July)

Location: Revere Beach, Revere Beach Blvd, Revere, MA (about 20 minutes northeast of Boston, MA, or 1 hour and 15 minutes southeast of Concord, NH)

Cost: Free

Parking: Since they close the streets for the event parking is limited. Parking is available at the Wonderland train stop. You may also find street parking on a side street.

Universally Accessible: Yes

Dog Friendly: Yes

Highlights: sand sculptures

Website: Revere Beach Sand Sculpture Festival

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The early bird gets the unobstructed sand sculpture photos. Or, at least so I thought.

The last Sunday of July, I decided to wake up early and photograph the sand sculptures from the annual Sand Sculpting Festival at Revere Beach. There was one slight problem. Everyone else north of Boston had the same idea. The streets and sidewalks at the beach were already slightly clogged with revelers, sun seekers and photogs by the time I arrived “early” at 6 a.m. But, with some effort, I was still able to get a few shots without people, workers or other objects in the background of most of my shots.

The annual sand sculpting event included 15 sand sculptors from all over the world. Awards were given to the top five sculptures that were judged by a panel of experts. There were also a “People’s Choice” award the visitors were able to vote for and a “Sculptor’s Choice” award the sculptors all voted for.

Then, there were 8 additional sand sculptures which did not win a prize but are no less impressive.

So, instead of a big, dramatic countdown, let’s start from the top of the list!

First place went to Canadian artist Melineige Beauregard for her sculpture, “The Nest.” Melineige also works with snow and ice to make sculptures during the colder seasons.

The first runner up in the contest was “Shell(ter)” by Jonathan (JOBI) Bouchard from Canada.

Third place went to Ilya Filimontsev from Russia for his sculpture “Guardian Angels.”

Fourth place went to Abe Waterman of Canada for his sculpture “I Just Can’t Bring Myself To Care, Doctor: An Ode To Apathy.”

Dan Belcher from Missouri came in fifth place with his sculpture “Trance.” Dan has been creating sand sculptures around the world since 1990.

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The Sculptor’s Choice Award which was voted on by all of the sand sculptors was awarded to David Mac from Belgium for his work “La Renaissance De Notre Dame.”

The People’s Choice Award was awarded to Sudarsan Pattnaik from India for his sculpture “Save Our Ocean Stop Plastic Pollution.

Although only five of the sculptures won a prize, they were worthy of our praise. One of my favorites from the festival was “Eye Of The Tiger” by Sue McGrew of Washington state. She has been sculpting sand for over a decade.

“Attempting Union” by Morgan Rudluff from Santa Cruz, California was another popular sculpture at the event.

Fergus Mulvany of Dublin, Ireland, created another fan favorite called “Deep Sleep Diving.”

“Dream About Flight” by Aleksei Rybak from Russia is another sculpture that failed to qualify for one of the top spots in the competition.

“Mama Look !! I Found My Teddy!” by Deb Barrett Cutulle was popular sculpture despite not placing in the top of the competition.

“Horsepower” by Maxim Gazendam was another sculpture that failed to place in the top five.

“The Birth Of A New Universe” by Pavel Mylnikov from Russia was another sculpture that failed to make the cut.

Last, but certainly not least, is “Lady Moon” by Benoit Dutherage From France.

The theme of this year’s sand sculpture festival was a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. And many of the sculptures from the To commemorate this monumental achievement, the main sand sculpture included sculptures of the astronauts involved in the voyage. Each of the sculptors contributed to these sculptures.

You have to be careful photographing the sunset, especially when you’re photographing it with other objects. For instance, I chose to use a lower aperture (5.6 for most of the photos) which left the sculptures often a bit dark. I also noticed that when I did edit the photos, I had to be careful to not use too much brightness or contrast or other buttons to control the darkness of the sculptures, especially the faces of the sculptures, because it can blow out the colors of the sunset. So, I chose to keep the sculptures a little dark and close up on the key features like faces to capture them without worrying about the background.

You can also try photographing from different angles where the shadows won’t be as bad. I was trying to avoid taking photos with people or other objects in the background. So it was hard to get photos of the sculptures from certain angles without getting people in the background and it also limited the angles I could shoot from. There were a lot of people there despite the early time of the shoot!

Since it’s unlikely the sand sculptures are going to move (and if the do leave immediately!), you can use AV (or Aperture Priority) mode so you can concentrate solely on the aperture settings. I have been using manual mode exclusively with my photos. But it took me a long time to get there. So, I do suggest using aperture priority mode if you’re not comfortable using full manual mode unless you’re photographing things that have action or some other element that requires a fast or variable shutter speed.


International Sand Sculpting Festival (Revere, MA)

 

Dates of Event: July 20-22, 2018 (annually, the third weekend off July)

Location: Revere Beach, 350 Revere Beach Blvd, Revere, MA

Cost: Free

Parking: a section of Revere Blvd is shut down for the event.  I found free street parking on Ocean Ave which runs parallel to Revere Beach Blvd.  parking restrictions are relaxed during the weekend on this street.  There are also parking lots near Wonderland Train station.  More info below:

Wonderland Greyhound Track
1300 North Shore Road, Revere MA 02151
$5 and a short walk to the festival
Suffolk Downs
525 William F McClellan Highway, Boston MA 02128
Free Parking Saturday and Sunday
There will be a shuttle in the parking lot to
Park in the lot and take the T from Suffolk Downs to Wonderland or Revere Beach
Stops.
Handicap Parking: Limited handicap parking is available on Revere Beach Boulevard
on a first come, first serve basis from Eliot Circle to Shirley Ave.

Handicapped Accessible: Yes

Dog Friendly: Yes

Website: Revere Beach International Sand Sculpting Festival

Highlights: sand sculptures, family friendly, dog friendly, activities for children, food trucks

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Ravens, frogs and sea gods are considered unusual things to see on a beach.  But they were only a few of the figures sculpted at the International Sand Sculpting Festival last month in Revere.

The theme of the sand sculpting festival was literacy.  This sand sculpture has a variety of fictional literary characters as well as some well known advertising logos in it.

It always seems you can’t ever photograph all of the highlights of an event or place as hard as you tr.  Although I didn’t seem to find it in the sculpture, there was a memorial to Sgt. Michael Chesna, a slain Weymouth (MA) police officer who was killed this summer by a perpetrator who stole his weapon and fired upon him.  Chesna was a veteran of the U.S. Army.  He joined shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks.  He was 42 years old when he was shot and killed.  A gofundme page has been set up for his family.

The sand used for the competition was delivered from a quarry in Hudson, NH.  Each artist was given 15 tons of sand to work with.  They were given 26 hours to sculpt their work.

There were 16 sand sculptures (counting at the festival with competitors from all over the world.

Fifth place and the People’s Choice Award went to Rachel Stubbs of the United Kingdom for “A Nouveau Love.”

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Breeze In, Breathe Out…” by Fergus Mulvaney  of Ireland snagged fourth place.

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Third place went to Ilya Filimontsev of Russia, for “The Fall Of Icarus.”

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“Gravity Drops” by Jonathan Bouchard of Canada took second place.

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And the award for first place went to….

Pavel Mylnikov, of Russia, for “Vanishing Muse”

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The remaining entries are as follow:

“Baby Love” by Paul Hoggard of England

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“It’s About Time” by Steve Topazio of  Tiverton, Rhode Island.

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“Goddess Rising” by Remy Hoggard, wife or “sand partner” of Paul Hoggard.  Remy said her sculpture was influenced by healing powers and inner beauty.  She also said the influence for this model was Kylie Jenner.

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“The Raven And The Frog” by David Mac.  Keeping with the literary theme of the sand sculpture theme, Mac positioned Edgar Allen Poe (the raven on the left) and Ralph Waldo Emerson (the frog on the right).  In an article I found on itemlive, Mac said he chose these two writers to sculpt because they are so diametrically different.  It’s also noteworthy to mention they were both born in Boston, MA.  It may be hard to see, without enlarging the photo, but Emerson, on the right, has a feather or quill in his mouth.

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“The Beat” by Jaku (Kabu) Zimacek of the Czech Republic.  One thing I love about most of these sand sculptures are the little things you may miss at your first view.  You may see two people, or at least their heads, at the top of the sculpture.

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“Making Beautiful Music” by Deborah Barrett/Cutulle of  Saugus, Massachusetts.

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“An American Dream” by Helena Bangert of the Netherlands.

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“Finding Shiva” by Sue McGrew of Montreal.

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“Teenage” by Melineige Beauregard of Canada.

Unfortunately, I had to leave before this sculpture was built.

 

“Divide And Conquer” by Abe Waterman of Prince Edward Island, Canada.

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The sand sculptures, which have been demolished long ago, stay up for about a week and they are lit up during the evening for viewing.

The sand sculpture festival is just that: a festival.  It is not just a sand sculpture competition.  There are food trucks, a merry-go-round and other activities such as a treasure hunt, cornhole game, hula hoop and sand sculpting classes for children (and big kids) to participate in or play with.

 

There were also a number of musical acts at the festival.

 

A group of artists from Cirque Du Soleil also performed at the festival.  These two performers did some amazing tricks with a soccer ball.

 

They also posed for some photos in front of the sand sculpture advertising their show.  I like how it looks like she is blowing a kiss to all of you reading this post.

 

And, of course, the beach is as beautiful as the sand sculptures.  For those of you not in the know, Revere Beach, and Revere as a city, gets an undeserved bad rep in some parts of MA.  It’s a beautiful city with highly regarded restaurants, especially Italian restaurants, that I would love to visit if I had the time, and appetite.  It all stems from an unfair, and frankly simmering ethnically biased, stereotype of the people of the area.  But, enough of my soap box.

Just look at the beach to see for yourself.  I really liked how the woman’s pretty aquamarine dress in the bottom photo looked against the water.

 

The web site for the event states that upwards of one million visitors stop by at some point to view the sculptures and I think they all showed up during my visit.  To get a sense of just how popular of an event the sand sculpture festival is look at this photo I took of the crowd at the event.  That is the only real issue I have with the event.  The road is too narrow and the area is really not big enough for the huge crowd and the crowds have only gotten bigger and bigger over the years.  I do worry, for instance, how hard it may be for medical personnel to get to someone if there was a medical emergency of some kind.

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Dogs apparently like sand sculptures as well.  These guys and girls had a great time checking out the sculptures.

Karma is an 11 week old Armenian Gampr mixed breed dog.

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Topper is a 6 year old Jack Russell rescue mix.

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Zorro (on the left) an 8 year old hairless Chinese Crested dog.  Jackie (on the right) is a 14 year old Powder Puff dog.

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Duese is a 2 month old Pit Bull.

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His family was so happy to see that he would be on the internet!

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Obie is a 3 year old Tree Walker Coon hound, Lab and Basset mix.

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This shy cutie is Cocoa, a 2 year old rescue Chihuahua.

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Lyla is a 2 year old mixed breed dog.

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Cookie is a 1 year old Louisiana Coon Hound and Cattle Dog mixed breed dog.

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Dogs weren’t the only animals who made it out to the sand sculpting festival.

Hindu is an adult bearded dragon.

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Loki is an adult Chinese Water Dragon.

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I patted Hindu and I still have all of my fingers.  Actually Loki and he were very docile and cute!

As much fun as the sand sculpting festival is, Revere Beach is a great place to go anytime.  Maybe I’ll see you there on my way to one of their fine restaurants!

Below is a video clip of some of the entertainment at the festival.  Some of the people from Cirque Du Soleil performed on one of the main stages during the event.


2016 Revere Beach International Sand Sculpting Festival (Revere, MA)

Dates Of Event: July 22-24

Location: Revere Beach, Revere Beach Boulevard, Revere, MA

Hours:

The hours of the sand sculpting festival were:

July 22 and Sat. July 23 from 10AM to 10PM and Sun. July 24 from 10AM to 8PM

Revere Beach is open 365 days a year

Cost:  No Admission Fee

Parking: One website states there is free parking on Revere Beach Boulevard where the beach is located.  But, I noticed signs said read there is a 4 hour parking limit on the boulevard during weekdays.  Parking is free on the boulevard during weekends and holidays.  If you can’t find parking on the boulevard there is a $5 parking fee at the Wonderland Greyhound (1300 North Shore Road, Revere MA).  You can also park at Suffolk Downs (525 William F McClellan Highway, Boston MA) about 20 minutes away.  A free shuttle can take you to the beach on the weekends  There are literally hundreds of parking spots on the boulevard.

Time To Allot For Visit:  About 30 minutes to an hour to view all of the sand sculptures

Dog Friendly:  Yes, on the sidewalk but not on the beach

Highlights: Sand sculptures, pretty beach, long, well kept beach

 

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Each year, sand sculpting masters come to Revere Beach from all over the world to test their skills at the International Sand Sculpting Festival.  The family (and dog) friendly event is usually held the 4th weekend of July.  In addition to the intricate works of art and pristine beach, there are also many activities and vendors for the entire family to enjoy.  The theme of this year’s main sand sculpture pictured above was “Hands On The Wheel” (a not so slight jab at texting while driving I would gather) and the gracious sponsors.

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Being the early riser than I am (have become), the shading and sun was tough to work with.  It’s actually easier in some ways to shoot when the sun is higher or when there is cloud cover, I have learned.

The big winner in the solo competition at this year’s festival was Melinage Beauregard of Montreal, Canada, for her “Go With The Flow” sand sculpture.  This is the second year in a row Melinage has won this competition.  She won both the overall competition voted on by the audience and she also won the sculptors choice award which was voted on by the fellow sculptors.

One thing I have noticed about these impressive sculptures is the subtle things that still must take an inordinate amount of time to create but make a huge improvement, like grading on the side of a sculpture.

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Second prize in the solo competition went to Italian sculptor Leonardo Ugolini for his work “Together.”  Ugolini paid close attention to detail in his sculptuure.  In the front, just above the astronaut’s head he etched “We Are Alone”.  On the back of the sculpture, he etched “We Are Alone” backwards.

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The third place winner in the solo competition was Guy-Olivier Deveau of Montreal, Canada, for his sculpture “Carcass.”

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In the duo sand sculpting competition, the team of Dan Belcher of St. Louis, Missouri and Marianne van den Broek of Key West, Florida for their sculpture, “Body Art.”

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One of the interesting things about this sculpture is there is supposed to be a hidden image if you look at it from a certain angle (straight ahead),  As the arrow and instructions in front of the sculpture directs you, you should see a frog in the sculpture.

Do you see it?  Me neither.

Second place in the duo competition went, appropriately enough, to Abe Waterman of Prince Edward Island, Canada and Morgan Rudluff of Santa Cruz, California for their piece “Le Numero Deux” (the number two).  This sculpture looks innocent and harmless enough until you take a closer look.

Well, you get the jist of it.

Third place in the duo competition was awarded to Deborah Barrett/Cutulle of Saugus, MA, and her partner Steve Topazio of Tiverton, Rhode Island.  They also took home the People’s Choice Award.  As a side note, you may notice that some of the sculptures seem grainier than other sculptures, this is because it rained Saturday night and when I took the photos on Sunday there was a different texture to the sand.  I included a closeup of the sand in this group of photos for a better perspective of how the sand looked.

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The other contestants'(there were 20 contestants total including the duo and solo artists) sculptures are posted below.

“I Love You So Much” by Marielle Heesels from the Netherlands.

“Always Connected” by Pavel Mylnikov from Moscow, Russia.

“Peaceful Dreams” by Nikolay Torkov of Moscow, Russia (maybe not so peaceful dreams?)

“The Last Flight” by Benjamin Probanza from Acapulco, Mexico.

“Redemption” by Jonathan Bouchard (aka “Jobi”) hailing from Montreal, Canada.

“How They View Us” – an interpretation of the Statue of Liberty holding a weapon.  This was the only sculpture with any inkling of a political theme.

 

“Fractal” by David Durcharme of British Columbia and Enguerrand David from Brussels, Belgium.

“Little Owl”by Paul and Remy Hoggard of Bulgaria.

They also held a children’s sculpting lesson activity for ages 5 to 12.  I am sure there were some future sand sculpters in that class.

Dogs like the sculptures also.  Revere Beach is a great place to walk your dog.  The long walkway along the beach will wear out even the most active dog.

Here are a few of the cute pooches I saw during my visit.

Neelix is a 4 year old pure breed Keeshond.  Neelix is named after the Star Trek Voyager character and he is so cool he even has his own Facebook page which you can like and follow here.  I did.

Darby is a 14 year old Boston Terrier Lab.

Lucy is a 10 year old Labradoodle.

James, a 6 year old French Bulldog, preferred to ride with his mom on her bicycle.

Below is a short video of one of the sand sculptors working on his sculpture.

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New England Nomad

Below is a video of the sand sculptors explaining their sculptures and what they mean to them.