Rehoboth Beach Sandcastle Contest mixing it up with new date, location

Longtime Delaware sand carvers and Rehoboth Beach sandcastle contest participants, back row, Lynn Williams, left, of Ellendale and Eric Bollinger of Frankford; and, front row, Darrell O’Connor, left, of Wilmington and Dewey Beach, and Andrew West of Harrington. The quartet spent a day carving for fun in early August in Rehoboth Beach. The castle was the combined work of Mr. Bollinger, Mr. O’Connor and Mr. West.  (Submitted photos)

Longtime Delaware sand carvers and Rehoboth Beach sandcastle contest participants, back row, Lynn Williams, left, of Ellendale and Eric Bollinger of Frankford; and, front row, Darrell O’Connor, left, of Wilmington and Dewey Beach, and Andrew West of Harrington.
The quartet spent a day carving for fun in early August in Rehoboth Beach. The castle was the combined work of Mr. Bollinger, Mr. O’Connor and Mr. West. (Submitted photos)

REHOBOTH BEACH –– Sand sculptors from around the region will take to Rehoboth Beach Saturday for Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce’s 38th Annual Sandcastle Contest.

The event has traditionally been held the first Saturday of August but was bumped to later in the year in hopes of gaining more participants than in recent years.

“We used to have hundreds of teams and it seemed like people were losing interest because there were only about 100 teams last year,” said Carol Everhart, president and CEO of the Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce.

“We always have thousands of people there to watch, but it really comes down to having lots of participants.”

The competition has also been moved in front of Funland, between Brooklyn Avenue and Hickman Street, from its traditional spot at Fisherman’s Beach on the north end of the Rehoboth Beach Boardwalk, near the Henlopen Hotel, giving participants more space than ever (especially since the beach will have a post-Labor Day crowd) so families will have a good spot to spend some time while the sculpting is underway.

“There is so much to see and there will be a lot to look at, so we hope people come out and enjoy what the sandcastle competition has to offer,” Ms.

This frog and snake was constructed by Ms.

This frog and snake was constructed by Ms. Williams.

Everhart said.

The Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce hopes the new location will help families get involved and there are even a limited number of Funland tickets that come with sculptor registration.

“As far as the sculptures go, we have everything,” Ms. Everhart said. “We usually have ones that go along with trends so I think we can expect some Pokémon this year but we always have the traditional beach-themed ones with dolphins and seashells too.”

For those who aren’t confident enough to enter a sculpture into the competition or just brush up on their skills for Saturday, there will be lessons and demonstrations given on the beach from 5 to 7 tonight by sand artist Darrell O’Connor.

On Saturday, sculptors will start anytime after 8:30 a.m. and all sculptures must be completed by 3 p.m.

Sculptors are not limited to any categories, the only divisions are in judging –– businesses, adults, (18 and up), kids 15 to 17 and kids 7 to 14.

From noon to 4 p.m., kids (both participating or viewing the competition) are welcome on the beach to make a keepsake sand creation under the Chamber of Commerce’s tent on Brooklyn Avenue.

At 5 p.m., after all the sandcastles have been judged, winners will be announced including the top 10 scoring pieces in both the children and adult competitions, one Judge’s Favorite in the Business category and two People’s Choice Awards.

In the event of bad weather, setup and registration may be delayed up until 10:30 a.m. and if bad weather prevails, the event will be canceled and rescheduled for September 2017.

For more information, call the Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce at (302) 227-6446 or visit the chamber website at www.beach-fun.com.

Reach staff writer Ashton Brown at abrown@newszap.com. Follow @AshtonReports on Twitter.

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