Parksville’s sand castle festival draws folks from far and wide

With attendance at the ongoing Quality Foods Canadian Open Sand Sculpting Competition strong but weather dependent, organizers took a peek at the origin of some of this year’s visitors.

With attendance at the ongoing Quality Foods Canadian Open Sand Sculpting Competition strong but weather dependent, organizers took a peek at the origin of some of this year’s visitors.

As tourists and locals alike enter the volunteer-run sand sculpture exhibition area, they are asked to sign a guest book and pin their hometown on a world map, explained volunteer co-ordinator Joan LeMoine.

Last year around half of the 99,000 visitors who signed the book were visiting from not only across Canada and all but two U.S. states, but 100 other countries.

LeMoine said she did a quick survey of the guest book and so far this year has already found people from all the provinces, 20 states and 30 other countries. She said it takes a while to tabulate all the results after the exhibition is over but stay tuned for the final count.

The site in Parksville Community Park is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily until August 14. Most activities are free but they ask for a donation of $2.50 per person to help keep it running.

Check www.parksvillebeachfest.ca for more.