REVERE — Four hundred tons of sand has been piled on Revere Beach and artists are hard at work collaborating to create a sculpture modeled after iconic children’s books.
At the sound of a horn Wednesday morning, competitors will begin a four-day sand sculpting creations each using 15 tons of sand imported from a quarry in Hudson, New Hampshire. Meanwhile, spectators will munch at the food truck festival and be treated to fireworks, live music, amusement rides, games and street performers.
“This is our 15th year and about a million people are expected to come see the sculptures from beginning to end,” said John Hamel, chairman of the festival and member of the Board of Directors for the Revere Beach Partnership.
Twenty-five sculptors flew in from around the world to participate in the 15th annual International Sand Sculpting Festival. Fifteen of them will compete in a sculpting competition from Wednesday to Saturday, each turning mounds of sand into their own creation.
The others are helping with the centerpiece sculpture and special events like the sand sculpting classes for children. This year’s theme for the centerpiece sculpture is literacy. The artists are collaborating to create a piece that includes elements of several iconic children’s books. Dr. Seuss and “The Cat in the Hat” will be front and center, there will be elements from “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle, a line of ducks from”Make Way for Ducklings” by Robert McCloskey and Humpty Dumpty sitting on a wall.
When finished, there will be surprise theatrical elements much like in past years, when steam emerged from an engine, and when a flat screen TV was used to depict a cell phone in an oversized sculpted hand, said Hamel.
The competitors include Helena Bangert of the Netherlands; Deborah Barrett-Cutulle of Saugus; Mélineige Beauregard of Quebec, Canada; Jonathan “Jobi” Bouchard of Montreal, Canada; Enguerrand David of Belgium; Ilya Filmonstev of Russia; Remy Hoggard of Bulgaria; Paul Hoggard of England; Sue McGrew of Tacoma, Washington; Fergus Mulvany of Ireland; Pavel Mylnikov of Moscow, Russia; Rachel Stubbs of England; Steve Topazio of Tiverton, Rhode Island; Abe Waterman of Prince Edward Island, Canada, and Jaku “Kuba” Zimacek of the Czech Republic.
From noon to 2 p.m. on Friday there will be live music from Richie Rich and the 24k Funk, from Girls Nite Out from 5-7 p.m. and from World Premiere Band from 8-10 p.m.
Competitors will stop sculpting at 5 p.m. and a welcome ceremony will commence at the Main Stage at 5:45 p.m. Friday.
On Saturday there will be live music from Decades of Rock from 10 a.m. to noon, followed by the main event, Luzia by Cirque Du Soleil. The show is inspired by the richness of Mexican culture.
The audience is brought on a journey of an imaginary Mexico, like walking in a dream where light, or “luz” in Spanish, quenches the spirit and rain, “lluvia,” soothes the soul, according to Cirque Du Soleil’s website.
Also on Saturday there will be live music from Smokin’ Joe & The Henchmen, Mike Rollins and Overdrive, as well as people’s choice voting, the award ceremony and fireworks from two barges.
The festival will wrap up Sunday with music from The Boondock Sinners, Dueling Piano Band and Element 78.