Spectacular sandcastles

Chelsea Powrie

What better way to have fun in the sun than building sandcastles?

Peach Fest's annual sandcastle competition took place Thursday afternoon and evening, with teams battling it out on Skaha Beach and all proceeds from registration going to the Penticton Community Projects Society. 

Publicity director Sandra Henderson, with the Rotary Club of Penticton Sunrise which organized the event, said she is amazed at how the competition has grown.

"The artwork down there is magnificent," Henderson said. "It's come from doing little sand pails to actually carving things in the sand. It has really expanded."

In the kids category, participants had an hour to create their masterpieces, whereas in the adult category, a two-hour window was provided. 

Teams of up to eight adults moulded and sculpted the specially wetted sand into a variety of fantastic sculptures in their 10-foot by 10-foot plots, and were judged based on artistic content, intricacy and the best use of their area. 

Any materials other than sand had to be environmentally friendly items such as pebbles and pinecones, and all plastic materials used to form the structures needed to be removed before judging, although judges seemed to allow some leniency when it came to these rules. 

The corporate winners were the team from Rona, with an Ogopogo sand creation.

The People's Choice award went to a creative rendering of the pipeline between B.C. and Alberta, and the family team winner was an intricate octopus sporting a jaunty cap and checking his cell phone. 

Even the non-winners had a blast, though, like young A.J. from Prince George. 

"It's an ancient mountain and it's supposed to represent British Columbia," she said, explaining her sculpture. 

"In our hearts, we're the winners," added her father.

This was the 38th year for the popular competition.

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