Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Sand Wars on Siesta Key

There's always something going on at the public beach on Siesta Key.  Last month, December, 2011, we were lucky enough to be there for the filming of the Travel Channel's production of Sand Wars.  (You're right.  These larger than life letters weren't made of sand.  Even world-famous sculptors couldn't pull that off).  

The two individuals in the foreground were the hosts of the Sand Wars presentation which will air within the next few months on the Travel Channel.  We'll be watching for it since we were in the background during some of the filming.  We signed papers giving them permission to include us in the show if they should choose to.  (I'm definitely not holding my breath in hopes of that happening, but you never know). 

This sand sculpture, BAD IDEA, is one of many constructed by teams of sand sculptors from all over the world.  It was created by the team, Sanding Ovation. 

I was able to get a close up shot of one of the members of the team, Shore Thing, at work on their sculpture named NO HASSLES...JUST SAND CASTLES.

I spoke with team, Sanding Ovation.  They always create a totally new sculpture whenever they compete.  When they aren't competing, they do sand sculptures for various events including weddings.

Stifling a sneeze?  Find the answer to that question a few photos down. 

Here's a glimpse of some of the tools used to create these unique sculptures.  This is Team Graniacs' ROCKET BOY.
...the back side of NO HASSLES...JUST SAND CASTLES.

I didn't catch the name of this one.  He was on display the first day I came upon Sand Wars.  I was too busy watching the production to notice the details.

...Sand Storm Team at work on the final sculpting stage of GEAR HEAD.

These sand sculptors were competing for a grand prize of $10,000, not bad compensation for playing in the sand.

Look who's in the dog house.

How about this one?  I'm impressed.

It was interesting to watch the camera men operating their equipment.
These panels were used to direct light where it was needed.

As you can see, we weren't the only ones intrigued by this operation.
An explosive was set in the base of each sand sculpture after its completion.  Spectators voted for their favorite sculpture each day of the three-day event.  The least favorite sculpture was exploded.  That pile of sand above is the result of one such demolition.  It's kind of sad to see only a pile of sand where something majestic had been only a second before.     

... another tool of the trade.

As glamorous as it may seem to work for the Travel Channel, the hosts put in long hours with a lot of time spent waiting for things to happen.

A makeup and hair attendant kept the female host looking her best.

Sculpting was done in three stages.  This is one of the entries in the first stage.  The frames will be removed from the middle and bottom sections for stage two and three.
Spectators were prompted to cheer at the top of their lungs with the promise of a t-shirt to the loudest person.  It's amazing what we'll do for a chance to get something free.  Several retakes were made of all of us screaming and hollering.  Technicians will edit the spectators' responses into appropriate spots in the show.

I fell for the hype.  Can you blame me?  It's all for the Travel Channel!!  When will I ever have a better chance to be on television?     

Ten minutes before the end of this phase of construction, the nose collapsed from the face of this sculpture.  We watched while the sculptor tried to quickly reform a new nose before his time was up.  It was disheartening to observe.

So that's it from the site of Sand Wars on Crescent Beach, Siesta Key, Florida, location of the finest quartz sand in the world.

This is Shaddy signing off and wishing you a wonderful day.  Bye, only for now.


Gullible said...

Fabulous! The one unnamed one looks like a manatee.

Rob said...

So my only question is this. When they are smoothing out things for the final time, do they call it "sanding"? :)

Cheryl aka Shaddy said...

GULLY: You're right. It's a manatee. It must have been fun to work on it!!

ROB: Probably not...that would be too logical. They probably call it "smanding." Do ya think???

Sarie said...

Fantastic! These are amazing. I can't wait to watch this episode. So cool! It must have been so much fun to watch all of this. Love the color of the sand!

Cheryl aka Shaddy said...

SARIE: I don't watch the Travel Channel regularly. Do they usually air their shows more than once? I don't know when it will be shown so I guess we'll just have to keep checking the show schedule. It'd be fun to see ourselves but I'm not expecting to. It was an unexpected surprise to be able to observe all the activity. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos, Sarie.