Dates of Event: July 20-22, 2018 (annually, the third weekend off July)
Location: Revere Beach, 350 Revere Beach Blvd, Revere, MA
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
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
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
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.”
Breeze In, Breathe Out…” by Fergus Mulvaney of Ireland snagged fourth place.
Third place went to Ilya Filimontsev of Russia, for “The Fall Of Icarus.”
“Gravity Drops” by Jonathan Bouchard of Canada took second place.
And the award for first place went to….
Pavel Mylnikov, of Russia, for “Vanishing Muse”
The remaining entries are as follow:
“Baby Love” by Paul Hoggard of England
“It’s About Time” by Steve Topazio of Tiverton, Rhode Island.
“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.
“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.
“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.
“Making Beautiful Music” by Deborah Barrett/Cutulle of Saugus, Massachusetts.
“An American Dream” by Helena Bangert of the Netherlands.
“Finding Shiva” by Sue McGrew of Montreal.
“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.
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.
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.
Topper is a 6 year old Jack Russell rescue mix.
Zorro (on the left) an 8 year old hairless Chinese Crested dog. Jackie (on the right) is a 14 year old Powder Puff dog.
Duese is a 2 month old Pit Bull.
His family was so happy to see that he would be on the internet!
Obie is a 3 year old Tree Walker Coon hound, Lab and Basset mix.
This shy cutie is Cocoa, a 2 year old rescue Chihuahua.
Lyla is a 2 year old mixed breed dog.
Cookie is a 1 year old Louisiana Coon Hound and Cattle Dog mixed breed dog.
Dogs weren’t the only animals who made it out to the sand sculpting festival.
Hindu is an adult bearded dragon.
Loki is an adult Chinese Water Dragon.
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.