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56th Annual Sand Castle & Sand Sculpture Contest is on June 1

Bring your shovel, buckets, and great ideas to the beach to create a unique piece of art in the sand at Alameda’s 56th Annual Sand Castle and Sand Sculpture Contest on Saturday, June 1, at Crown Memorial State Beach.

Alameda Post – 55th ARPD Sand Castle and Sculpture Contest at Crown Beach, Alameda. June 10, 2023
The Monperchen families’ entry “Snailed It!” was the winner of the 2023 Sand Castle & Sand Sculpture Contest’s Family category. Photo Steve Gorman.

This free event is open to anyone who wants to dig in and create a masterpiece on the beach, or just watch all of the action. To participate in the contest, bring your shovel, buckets, and great ideas to the Bathhouse (Otis and Westline drives) at 9 a.m. on June 1 to register for the contest. Then start digging! View the winners from 2023 and 2022.

Alameda Post - poster for the 56th Annual Sand Castle and Sculpture Contest

  • Registration begins at 9 a.m. and closes at 11 a.m.
  • The contest starts at 9 a.m. and ends at noon.
  • Judging starts at noon and lasts until approximately 1 p.m.
  • Structures must be completed by the noon deadline time or upon the arrival of the first judge.
  • Awards ceremony starts at 1 p.m.
Sand castle and sculpture categories:
  • Ages 12 and under.
  • Ages 13 and older.
  • Family.
Official contest rules:
  • Sand Castles and Sand Sculptures must consist of sand only with the exception of wood, rocks, shells, etc. found on the beach the day of the contest and used as decorations only. NO GLASS OR LIVE ANIMALS.
  • No superstructures or permanent forms of any kind shall be incorporated in your structure.
  • Sand forms (flower pots, milk cartons, buckets, etc.) may be used, but only as forms.
  • The use of shovels, hoes, and spatulas is permitted.
  • The castle or sculpture must be confined within your allotted space.
  • No collecting of live animals or egg cases from wet beach and mudflat areas.
Judging criteria:
  • Design – 30 points (originality of subjects and design).
  • Detail – 30 points (originality of shape, lines and space).
  • Neatness – 20 points (sharp relief, balanced proportions overall).
  • Technique – 20 points (use of forms, drop method, shaping of arches, etc.).

For more information, call Alameda Recreation and Parks Department at 510-747-7529, email [email protected], or visit the ARPD Sand Castle and Sculpture Contest website.

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