Taking a cue from King Canute, the Broulee & Mossy Point Association sensitively organised an outgoing tide for its annual New Year Eve’s sand sculpture and sandcastle competition.
The usually tranquil sands of North Broulee beach erupted into a bewildering array of dragons, turtles, owls, mermaids, seahorses, pyramids, buddas, castles and santas.
“It was also a particularly prolific year for hippos,” the association’s sand castle supremo Richard Fisher said.
“I counted four and they all looked particularly well fed.”
Treading a cautious path through the wildlife were judges Mandy Roberts, of Canberra, and Petra Schwer, of Germany, who faced the daunting task of picking winners with aplomb.
Mandy had particularly impeccable breeding for the job, being the great grand daughter of famous landscape painter Tom Roberts.
Well-nourished sculptors showed the benefits of their festive feasting by energetically molesting the compliant low tide sand using only toy buckets and spades into surprisingly large and often strange structures in the one hour allowed.
An admiring crowd of some 2000 encouraged the 430 participants.
There were some first timers: Ebony Ryan (11) and sister Finlay (9) from Brisbane who were visiting their Uncle in Broulee joined in. Finlay thought the competition was “good”, high praise indeed coming from a Queenslander.
And then there were lots of recidivists: the Super Sandy Sculpturers from Mossy Point continued their proud tradition of being disqualified (for the fifth time).
“All the kids want to be in it” spokesman Phillip Allpress cheerfully explained when asked about the fifteen exuberant members of his team (the maximum allowed is five).
Their massive sculpture of a thong footed surfer disappearing into the bowels of broken down combi was a crowd favourite.
Byron, Myles and Rowan from Brisbane, with a depiction of the Broulee ocean shared the Junior First prize with Katherine, Lauren and Isobell of Sydney who constructed a good luck mermaid.
The open sculpture prize was won by the Midson family of Mossy Point with their sea turtle which had foolishly decided to lay eggs in the middle of a sand castle competition on a crowded beach.
Tumut’s Taylor family came third with a cryptic sculpture of an octopus solving a rubic’s cube – eight limbs are better than two apparently.
Eric and Olivia Buonopane’s rather corpulent reclining Santa suggested that gastric banding surgery could be in order before next Christmas.
Some also thought that the very happy (and large) budda by Lizette Richards’ mob from Tomakin could have benefitted from a maternity bra.
The Raymonds from Newcastle won the Senior Sandcastle section.
“We’ve been going now for over a decade and it’s just wonderful seeing so many people enjoying the event,” Mr Fisher said.
“We had 90 teams with 4 to 5 participants each and the competition was hot. There a real community feeling around the event, it just gets better each year. We particularly grateful to the many local businesses which generously provided a terrific assortment of prizes.”
A good crowd graced the sands at North Broulee Beach for the New Year’s Eve Sand castle and sculpture competition
3 Hippos were particularly prolific this year and all looked well fed
4 A turtle which foolishly laid eggs in the middle of a busy sand castle competition won the senior sculpture prize for the Midson family of Mossy Point
5 First time participants Ebony and Finlay Ryan from Brisbane thought the competition was “good”, high praise indeed coming from Queenslanders.
6 judges Petra Schwer of Germany (L) and Mandy Roberts of Canberra (R) faced the daunting task of picking winners with aplomb. Mandy had particularly impeccable breeding for the job, being the great grand daughter of famous landscape painter Tom Roberts.
7 Tumut’s Taylor family putting the finishing touches to their cryptic depiction of an octopus solving a rubic’s cube – eight limbs are better than two apparently.
8 The Waterson families from Shepperton and Surfside and their turtle
9 Tomakin’s Daisy & Paul Ware & Lizette Richards and Canberra’s Sarah Maher with a very happy (and large) budda
10 Eric and Olivia Buonopane of Surf Beach and their rather corpulent reclining Santa who just might have gastric banding surgery before next Christmas.
11 & 12 The Super Sandy Sculpturers from Mossy Point continued their proud tradition of being disqualified (for the fifth time) – they had fifteen exuberant members when the maximum allowed is five. Their massive sculpture of a thong footed surfer disappearing into the bowels of broken down combi was a crowd favourite.