30th Annual Sand Sculpting Championship


    The 30th annual American Sand Sculpting Championships returns to Fort Myers Beach from November 18 – 27 at the Wyndham Garden Hotel at 6890 Estero Boulevard, with more sculptures and new things to do as part of its anniversary event.

    Spectators will enjoy the unique opportunity to see some of the planet’s best sand sculptors craft amazing beach creations. Master sculptors compete in the Solo event the first week, followed by Doubles competition the next. This year’s sculptors represent 5 nations and 12 states and collectively hold over 400 competition medals, including many world championships. There will be 16 Solo Sculptors and five teams of Double Master Sculptors.

    “We brought back as many of the previous medal holders as possible,” says Bill Knight, co-chair of the event with his wife and business partner Marianne. “13 of the 16 solo competitors are previous medal winners, and that is so impressive. This is Invitation Only, meaning we have the best of the best! It is literally one of the finest sand sculpting competitions in the world.”30th Annual Sand Sculpting Championship, fort myers beach 2016, Wyndham Garden Hotel

    Bill says that for the past 15 years the event has hosted the Advance Amateur Florida State Championships, “but in honor of our anniversary we are taking this to the next level by introducing a new event: the Advanced Amateur National Championship on Saturday, November 19, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is a mixed team/solo event for beginning or advanced amateurs by Invitation Only.”

    The Sand Sculpting Competition is daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition to the talented sculptors, there will be interactive activities, such as Quick Sand speed sculpting, amateur sculpting contest, photo opportunities, Kid’s Zone, sand sculpting lessons and demonstrations, and the Sand Vendor Village with over 50 exhibitors.

    Admission is $7, with kids 4 & under free, and a revolving bus system to transport guests from the free Lover’s Key parking area to the competition. The Greater Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce is coordinating volunteers and vendors. For details, contact Rhonda at 239-454-7500. For information see FMBSandSculpting.com.


    Gary Mooney


    Photos of 2015 sculptures by Sarah List.