SandFest needs sponsors
One of the most popular events in Port Aransas, Sand- Fest will feature 25 world-class master sculptors in solo and duo competitions, as well as amateur competitions for “guppies” (up to age 7), youth (ages 8 to 12), teens (ages 13-17) and adults 18 and older.
The festivities will take place on the beach between Sandcastle Drive and Beach Access Road 1A, about one mile south of Horace Caldwell Pier, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.
Sponsors are still needed for master sculptors. To sponsor, contact marketing director Tanya Fain at (512) 762-5401.
Volunteers are needed during the festival, and anyone who would like to help is asked to call Betty Crawford at 749- 6674. Specifically, volunteers are needed for the 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and the 1 to 6 p.m. shifts each day of the festival. Volunteers will help with traffic control, managing the Handicap Tent, helping in the photo op area and directing volunteers.
Admission to the festival is free, but those who want a close-up view of the masters’ sculptures will be charged $2 for a hand stamp, which will allow entry into the master sculpting area for the day. The masters’ sculptures will be fenced off, but still visible from a short distance.
Any entries, excluding the masters’ divisions, will be accepted until 9 a.m. on Saturday. Entry forms can be found at www.texasSandFest.com on the link for each individual contest. Entry fees are listed on the Web forms.
An awards ceremony for winners in all divisions will be held in the Entertainment Tent Sunday at 3 p.m.
SandFest is a family event with vendors selling food and merchandise, and free live music. A beer and wine garden, sponsored by L&F Distributors, will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.
On Friday, the centerpiece demo sculpture will be completed by the master sculptors. SandFest souvenir shops, vendor and food booths and Lesson Mountain, where anyone can take free sandsculpting lessons, will be open on Friday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
RTA (Regional Transportation Authority) buses will provide transportation to and from Sand- Fest. A 25-cent per person fee will be charged.
Buses, identifiable by the Sand- Fest signs and logos in the windows, will run from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Spectators may park for free at Roberts Point Park near the ferry landing, or at Sharkey’s Beach Club, 2600 State Hwy. 3611. The buses will take passengers close to the site, but walking a short distance likely will be necessary.
The city trolley is another transportation option, and also costs just 25 cents. The first trolley will leave the city marina at 10:20 a.m., returning about every 45 minutes with the last returning at 5:50 p.m.
A complete trolley schedule is available at city offices or in the South Jetty Visitors’ Guide, on newsstands and at www.portasouthjetty.com.
Parking on the beach is limited to designated areas around the site. All beach traffic between Sandcastle Drive and Beach Access Road 1A will be southbound only.
General parking will be allowed north of Sandcastle Drive or south of Access Road 1A. Parking will not be allowed on Sandcastle Drive or Access Road 1A.
All pets must be on leashes while anywhere on the beach, and no glass containers are allowed.
Proceeds from SandFest will benefit groups that have agreed to provide volunteers to help. Those groups are the Port Aransas Community Theatre, the Port Aransas Art Center and the Helping Hands Food Pantry.