Revere Beach Sand Sculpting Festival

On Sunday, J and I took the T to Revere Beach, where we caught the final day of this year’s National Sand Sculpting Festival. This is the third year we’ve gone to Revere Beach to see the sand sculptures, and every year we marvel at the level of detail master artisans can achieve in a seemingly shapeless medium.

Revere Beach Sand Sculpting Festival

In the aftermath of this year’s Boston Marathon bombings, it was no surprise that the theme of this year’s festival was “Boston Strong.” The festival’s central sculpture—a towering wall featuring the names of the festival’s corporate sponsors—was flanked with American flags and featured images of runners, a tribute to law enforcement (including slain MIT officer Sean Collier), and a nod to the Good Samaritans, first responders, doctors, and nurses who helped victims.

Boston Strong

Revere Beach Sand Sculpting Festival

Collier Strong

Revere Beach Sand Sculpting Festival

The phrase “Boston Strong” represents the way an entire community came together in the aftermath of tragedy, stranger helping stranger, and I suppose sand sculptures are a good metaphor for this kind of community bonding. Individual grains of sand are neither strong nor special; they’re just gritty. En mass, however, grains of sand can either wear down stone or build towering structures. Given the nitty-gritty particulars of fate, what kind of structures might we build, together?

Click here for more photos from this year’s National Sand Sculpting Festival at Revere Beach. Enjoy!