Sandsculpting Competition Underway

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Judging is Saturday

By Patrick Cronin

Hampton Union, Friday, June 22, 2007

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online]
Kristie Haupt creates a fire engine out of sand during the seventh annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Competition.
[Scott Yates photo / SMG]

HAMPTON -- The seventh annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Competition officially kicks off today with 13 world class sculptors competing for $15,000 in prize money.

"Everyone is very excited," said organizer Greg Grady. "They all told me they have some really good ideas. As far as what they are carving, they won't tell me."

Grady said the sculptors will have 21 hours over three days to complete their pieces.

When the three days are up, the judges will announce the winners at 8 p.m. Saturday night at the Sea Shell stage at Hampton Beach.

Dan Doubleday, who has won the top prize three times in Hampton, said he is dedicating this year's piece to his girlfriend, Meredith Corson, who is also participating in the competition.

"It's going to be a guy who is looking at himself kind of distraught with a woman holding him up," Doubleday said. "The piece is for her (Meredith) because she is good to people. It takes a good woman to feel better about yourself."

Doubleday, from Treasure Island, Fla., said he has been sculpting sand for nine years. Over the years, he has won numerous National and International Masters Contests and is still the only American to have won a World Sand Sculpting

Corson said she met and fell in love with Dan during a sand competition.

"There was just a little love on the pile," Corson said.

Corson said while she doesn't have a great idea for this competition, she is going to do something extremely difficult.

"I'm thinking about doing an underwater theme in New England but I'm doing it in a totally different position that no one has ever seen," said Corson.

Lucinda (Sandy Feet) Wieranga, of South Padre, Texas, is probably the best known sand artist in the country.

She has been in both episodes of "Sand Blasters: Extreme Sand Sculpting Championship"; "LIVE with Regis & Kelly" and in a full-page People Magazine spread.

"Hampton is my favorite competition on the circuit," said Wieranga, who plans to do a piece entitled "Town and Country."

Fred Mallet, of Port Aransas, Texas, said his piece this year will be entitled "American Tourist in Italy."

"The idea is very risky and I don't want to say that much about it yet," Mallet said.

Also competing this year is 'Sergeant' Art Knapp, of Massapequa, N.Y., Marianne von den Broek, of Key West, Fla., and last year's winner, Karen Fralich, of Burlington, Ontario.

Marianne Van Den Broek, a master sand sculptor from Key West, Fla., smoothes out the ?road? for the sand sculpture parade.
[Scott Yates/]
The dragon is one of the main attractions of the sand sculpture parade that is part of the seventh annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Competition.
[Scott Yates/]