Hampton Beach Sand Sculpture Winners Announced

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By Liz Markhlevskaya

Hampton Union, Tuesday, June 29, 2010

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online]
Justin Gordon won first place at the sand sculpture competition for this creation called "It's No Yolk."
[Liz Markhlevskaya photo]

HAMPTON -- The sidewalks of Hampton Beach were flooded with onlookers Saturday as the sand sculpting competition came to a close. Hundreds of people made it to the Seashell Stage to hear the names of the winners.

"We're very pleased with the crowd," said Julie Leonard, beach information office manager for the Hampton Area Chamber of Commerce.

The first-prize winner was Justin Gordon, with his work "It's No Yolk."

"It seemed to have the most detail," said Rich Cormio from Medford, Mass., who voted for Gordon's sculpture for the People's Choice Award on Saturday afternoon.

"It's definitely a talent I don't have," said Marilyn Collette from Lynn, Mass., who enjoyed the amount of detail and expression in Gordon's work.

The sculpture that won the People's Choice Award was Michel Lepire's "Enchanting Spirit," which featured a castle surrounded by a large, detailed dragon. When Lepire's name was announced at the ceremony, many people clapped and cheered. Lepire, from Quebec, Canada, dedicated the sculpture to his wife, Charlotte.

"I like the dragon (sculpture)," said David Lundberg from Manchester, Conn. "It's all the detail. He's got a good front side and a back side."

Lundberg, who voted for Lepire's sculpture that day, came from Connecticut just to witness the competition.

In addition, Guy-Oliver Deveau won the Sculptor's Choice Award with his work, "Ravishing and Ravenous."

Gordon said he was surprised when he was announced as the first-prize winner; he thought the works of Dan Belcher, Lepire, or Deveau could be expected to win.

According to Greg Grady, the co-organizer of the sand sculpting competition at Hampton Beach for the last 10 years, it is always difficult picking a winner. The criteria for judging the sculptures is the overall "wow" effect of the work; the technical skill of the sculptor and the degree of the sculpture's difficulty; whether the theme is well-balanced with detail and design; and the plot and sand usage.

The second-prize winner was Karen Fralich with her sculpture of a young girl sitting next to a dragon, named "A Picture Comes to Life." Third-place winner was Deveau, who replaced Lepire's son Marc in this year's competition. The fourth-place award went to Carl Jara and his "Fish Out of Water," while fifth place went to Lepire's sculpture.

“Enchanting Spirit” by People’s Choice winner Michel Lepire.
[Liz Markhlevskaya photo]
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