Artists from around the world descended upon Siesta Key’s public beach over the weekend to compete in this year’s international sand sculpting competition.
The eighth annual Siesta Key Crystal Classic competiton drew thousands to the beach as 12 teams from nations around the world including the United States, South Korea, Italy and Ireland came to compete for the $3,000 grand prize.
“Once again, the sand sculptors truly wowed us with their creativity and detailed craftsmanship, and the amazing turnout has shown us that people love this event and Siesta Beach,” said the competition’s chairwoman Maria Bankemper.
In Sunday’s award ceremony, Karen Fralich, of Canada, and Dan Belcher, of the U.S., took first place with their sculpture “Winter is Coming.”
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Other prizes and winners:
Second place ($2,500): “Water Dream,” by Helena Bangart, The Netherlands, and Fergus Mulvany, Ireland / Holland
Third place ($1,000): “Reclamation,” by Steve Topazio, U.S, and Ron MacDonald, U.S.
Sculptors’ choice ($1,500): “Catalytic Thinking,” Damon Langlois, Canada, and Joris Kivits, The Netherlands
People’s Choice: ($1,000): The public can see the sculptures and vote through 5 p.m. Monday, Nov. 13. Winners will be announced Tuesday on the competition’s Facebook page.