(Keyless, the winning sand sculpture in the 2014 Siesta Key Crystal Classic, photo credit: Studio F productions.)

The Siesta Key Crystal Classic Master Sand Sculpting Competitionfeatures professional sand sculptors creating towering artworks that can exceed 10 feet tall. The Crystal Classic has become a favorite for many sculptors — some say that Siesta Key’s pristine, white sand makes the sculptures evoke carved marble.

The Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce and Mote Marine Laboratory are organizing partners in this year’s event. Founded in 2010, the Crystal Classic is a result of discussions between master sand sculptor and Siesta Key resident Brian Wigelsworth and representatives of the Siesta Key Chamber, the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, Sarasota County Parks and Recreation, Mote and the Sarasota Convention and Visitors Bureau (now Visit Sarasota County).

Since its founding, the Crystal Classic has become a true community treasure. It was named a finalist in Sarasota Magazine’s Best of 2014.

This year’s event runs from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday through Tuesday, Nov. 13-17, at Siesta Beach, 948 Beach Road on Siesta Key, Fla. The event will include: master sand sculptors competing with all-day viewing Friday through Tuesday; over 60 vendors Friday through Monday; live entertainment starting at noon on Friday and continuing through Sunday; and an amateur sand sculptor contest on Saturday. On Tuesday, sculpture viewing will continue with a special Mobi-Mat for easier walking on sand.

Off-site shuttle service will be offered through SCAT routes 10 & 11 throughout the event.

A portion of proceeds will support Mote’s Sea Turtle Conservation and Research Program, which coordinates conservation of endangered sea turtles along 35 miles of Sarasota County beaches, including Siesta Key.

Sponsor information and applications for the event’s popular Vendor Village are available at: www.siestakeycrystalclassic.com

For more information about the Crystal Classic, contact the Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce (941-349-3800 or siestakeycrystalclassic@gmail.com) or visit: www.SiestaKeyCrystalClassic.com
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