Virtual sand sculpture contest underway


After more than 30 years, the annual Birch Bay Sand Sculpture Competition will be held virtually in 2020 to comply with social distancing strategies set to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

The event will run throughout the month of July, and votes will be compiled the first week of August through the Birch Bay Chamber of Commerce’s website.

The chamber asks for sculptors to fill out a registration form and submit a photo of their sculpture to their website by 5 p.m. on July 31.

In previous years, the competition was a huge weekend festival for Birch Bay, with live music, crowd voting and an awards ceremony. Due to Covid-19, the chamber was forced to move the celebration and voting process online, said Liz Thornton, executive director of the Birch Bay Chamber of Commerce.

Once votes are compiled, prizes will be distributed to the creative winners.

The chamber hopes participation will remain the same. They have seen years with hundreds of people taking part in the competition, Thornton said, transforming the shoreline into an art exhibit.

It’s also a perfect social distancing activity for families, she said. “We didn’t want to take that away,” Thornton said. “It’s one of the easiest things to do [safely] right now.”

Past sculptures have included geometric freeforms, sea turtles, alligators, mermaids, mythical castles and a favorite pet.

The only rules this year are:

• Sand sculptures must be created in Birch Bay.

• Participants should follow physical distancing rules and health department guidelines if building with non-family groups.

• To have fun

To sign-up for the competition and find out more information, go to


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