This Year’s Competitors

Master sculptors from around the world apply to compete in our annual competition.

Parksville is known within the sculpting circuit for its fine hospitality and beautiful location. The Parksville Beach Festival Society works very hard to ensure the sculptors are well taken care of.  Their travel, meals and accommodation are paid for. They also receive an appearance fee as well as the opportunity to win prize money.

Attracting sculptors to apply for our competition is done by sending out an open invitation to past competitors as well as to any new/unknown sculptors who have expressed interest.  The top 3 singles and doubles from the previous year receive automatic entry in to the next year’s competition.

Brian Wigelsworth & Dan Belcher (United States)
Brian grew up playing and surfing on beaches from California to Hawaii to Florida. It was a natural progression until I was stopped on a beach while Sculpting and asked if I wanted to create sand sculptures inside grocery stores for Miller Lite. After I heard how much they were willing to pay…done.
Dan has been creating professional sand sculptures since 1990, learning from many pioneers of the art form, and now collaborating with a family of many of the best and most talented sand sculptors from around the World. During his time, he has won 14 world Championship in the Team, Doubles, and Solos categories, and competed in scores of other contests and hundreds of professional projects across the country and around the world including Japan, China, Denmark, Italy, Australia, Great Britain. He loves the balance of the physical and creative sides of working with sand.
Edith van de Wetering & Wilfred Stijger (Netherlands)
When Edith was young, she hated sand between her toes, but now she couldn’t live without it! Participating in the sand sculpture festival in Scheveningen (The Netherlands) started as a hobby but got out of control fast. Now she’s been traveling the world building sand, snow, and ice sculptures for over 15 years.
Wilfred started sculpting sand on the beach of Katwijk, (The Netherlands) after reading a book by Pieter Wiersma. The book inspired Wilfred to sculpt and build his confidence. Through his network, Wilfred was invited to festivals and has since been travelling the world creating beautiful sculptures in sand, snow, and ice.
Gresham Glover (Portugal) & Kevin Crawford (Australia)
Gresham and Kevin's careers as sculptors’ spans over 20 years of helping produce some of the largest sculpture events in the World. They have won numerous international awards at the World Championships at Harrison Hot Springs, B.C. Canada, First Place in 2004 at the European Sand Sculpture Competition on Scheveningen Beach in the Netherlands, 2009 People’s Choice Award at the International Sand Sculpture Festival in Rimini, Italy, and People’s Choice in 2010 at Riga's, Latvian World Championship.
Seveline Beauregard (Canada) & Joris Kivits (Netherlands)
To Sèveline art is an unlimited world to express oneself. Every form of art offers a chance for self discovery. As a child she wanted to try everything: dancing, singing, drawing, painting, writing, sketching and carving.
Seven years ago, her father and sister invited her to work with them on some projects and since then, she is now carving sand, snow and ice around the world.
Before Joris started carving he worked as a freelancer in: graphic design, art direction for movies and television, photography, and an illustrator to name a few. Nowadays makings sculptures has become his main work. In 2006 he participated his first project in Lommel (Belgium). Making sand sculptures is like a theatre-act; you can enjoy it as long as it is there and than the memory and pictures are the only things that remain..
Sue McGrew(USA) & Dmitry Klimenko (Russia)
Dmitry and Sue started competing together in 2019, after years of carving next to each other at sand sculpting festivals and competitions around the world. Since meeting at the Tottori Sand Museum in Japan, their instant bond has led to a friendship that has grown with each passing year of artful adventures and Parksville dance parties. Wild in their creativity, these two goofballs are excited to combine their talents to compete in the gritty glory of sand sculpting. 
Susanne Ruseler (Netherlands) & Jakub Zimacek (Czech Republic)
Jakub started sculpting sand at the beaches of south Spain in 2003. After practicing skills at the beach, he attended the international sand sculpture festival in Portugal and since then has been traveling the world participating in international sand events and competitions.
Susanne Ruseler was born in Rotterdam and started sand sculpting in 2003, while studying biology in Utrecht. After receiving her master’s degree in animal behavior and ecology, she started her own sculpture company also working with other materials such as snow, ice, foam and concrete. Susanne really enjoys alternating between materials, but mostly works with sand, which is her favourite material. She travels all over the world working on projects, events and competitions.
Ted Siebert (USA) & Fred Dobbs (Canada)
Ted and Fred first met at Alki Beach near Seattle, Washington as competitors ('Freddie and the Sandblasters' vs 'Team Totally in Sand'). We later joined forces and competed together and have created fabulous sand sculptures around the world ever since. Our sand sculpting journey has taken us to Australia, South Korea, Taiwan, Kuwait, Romania, Saudi Arabia, and throughout the USA, and Canada.
Guy Beauregard - Canada
Guy Beauregard, has traveled to over 15 countries to play with sand, ice, and snow. He introduced his children to sculpting, and now is honored to work, support, and compete with them.
Manuel Campos - Colombia
Manuel Campos is a crazy dreamer who always seeks to connect his works with the deepest part of his being. In his 15 years of sculpting he has visited 14 countries carrying the colors of his country's flag.
Guy-Olivier Deveau - Canada
Professional sand and ice sculptor from Québec, Canada for many years, this occupation merely was a summer job meant to help finance university study in the field of philosophy. After meeting and working with professional sculptors as a helper, he refined his skills and finally was able to enter the sand sculpture World Championship in 2008 where he placed 4th. This is the event that started him on the path he is on today, traveling the world to perform his art.
Karen Fralich - Canada
Karen has been creating sand sculptures for 29 years. She has no formal art training, but always loved sculpting in multiple mediums before she discovered sand. Her passion, curiosity and many incredible mentors lead her to embrace this unusual career. In 1998, she entered her first international sand sculpting contest and by 2001 she was working full-time as a free-lance sand sculptor. She specializes in fantasy and whimsical themes, but she loves a challenge.
To date, Karen has competed in over 150 Masters Level International sand sculpture contests, winning 29 First Place Titles, as well as 5 World Championship titles.
Her work takes her around the world, collaborating with friends, festivals and companies in Canada, the USA, Japan, Mexico, Italy, Holland, Spain, England, UAE, South Korea, Taiwan, and Australia.

Marie-Line Gagne - Canada
Marie-Line Gagné is a professional carver whose canvas spans the realms of sand, snow, wood and ice. Their artistic exploits defy conventional norms, as they sculpt ephemeral wonders that transcend the boundaries of reason. With a flair for the fantastical, each carving is a whimsical journey into the surreal, where beach vibes intertwine with cosmic musings. Embracing the complexity, beauty and absurdity of existence, her art becomes a portal to alternate realities, where meaning is found in the most unlikely of places. So, behold the wonder of their creations and prepare to be swept away on a tide of delightful creativity!
Isabelle Gasse - Canada
Isabelle was nudged into finding her artistic destiny at the tender age of 16, thanks to an art teacher that encouraged her to compete in a local amateur snow sculpting event in Québec Canada, her home town. A fast-rising professional in the snowy and icy art, she is shaping her frosty fantasies in worldwide events, Ice Hotel of Québec among others, and brought home lots of awards. Monumental and ephemeral sculptures was now the way for her to sow a little more poetry in this world. In a move from snow suit to sandals, she swapped her ice-carving gadgets for beach bum toolkit to be able to enjoy the delightful feeling of the sun on her skin while carving. And that's how, since 2021, she is bringing her well-mastered surrealistic style in many sand events, as in the Canadian Race against the Tide TV show.
David Kaube - Canada
David Kaube was in the Bachelor of Arts Program at VIU for 2 years where he took classes in oil painting, drawing, classical and computer animation. Along with this he has done professional photography work and has two screen plays registered with Writers Guild of America. David thinks its a little funny that he has never taken a sculpting class but has been paid to teach one!
Thomas Koet - United States
Thomas has been sculpting for 25 years. Large events give him the opportunity to make his art on an impressive scale. Originally from the Netherlands, Thomas has a master's degree in Industrial Design Engineering and has been a designer and lead sculptor for some of Europe's and North America's largest sand sculpting events. Thomas' artistic goal is to make extraordinary sculptures with the highest quality possible. Accomplishments include 2010 World Champion of Sand Sculpting and 2019 Best Sand Sculptor of the Netherlands for a national TV Show. His ability and talent has taken him all over Europe and the US as well as China, Korea, Japan, Indonesia, the Middle East and Canada.
Andrei Kudrin - Ukraine/Canada
Andrei Kudrin, an accomplished sand and ice sculptor, began his artistic journey in Kharkiv, Ukraine. He moved to Squamish, BC in 2022, bringing with him a rich background in the intricate art of sand carving. His passion for sculpture ignited in 1998 while attending art college. In 2002, Andrei joined an international company specializing in sand and ice competitions, which allowed him to refine his skills and gain global recognition. Over the years, he has participated in numerous competitions across Europe, Israel and China showcasing his remarkable talent and creativity.
Damon Langlois - Canada
Damon got started as a sand artist in 1992 competing at the World Championships in Harrison Hot Springs. This was the gathering place for all the greats, and he learned a lot from those artists. In the sand Damon likes to plan a little but then discover the sculpture within. “My favourite part of a competition is actually the “pound-up” where we compact tons of sand into forms making it strong enough to work our magic. I don’t really like the shoveling but I always take note of the final structure that is full of potential energy and creative possibility.”
Viacheslav Lemelianenko - Ukraine
Viacheslav Lemelianenko was born in Crimea in 1971. A talented and passionate artist, Viacheslav pursued his formal education at the Kharkiv Academy of Design and Arts, where he graduated in 1996. Following his graduation, he spent five years honing his skills in the sculpture department of the Academy of Arts.

Viacheslav’s sculptures have garnered significant acclaim, with his works being showcased in galleries and private collections both within Ukraine and internationally. His artistic expertise extends beyond traditional mediums, as he has actively participated in numerous international sand and ice festivals. His impressive creations have been featured in festivals held in Turkey, the Netherlands, Germany, Colombia, Indonesia, Italy, and Ukraine, earning him a distinguished reputation in the global art community.

Craig Mutch - Canada
Craig is an artist who wears many hats - sand sculpture, ice, snow, pumpkin, and woodcarving, body painting and professional photography for over twenty-five years. Originally an Illustrator and Graphic Designer from Edmonton, Alberta, he changed careers and boarded the cruise ship industry where he worked for many years as a lab manager/photographer/artist. He now resides in Vancouver, BC, and travels around the world producing private works for large shopping malls and special event productions. He is currently working in the film industry as Set Artist/Sculptor for such features as ‘Planet of the Apes’ and ‘The Solutrean’. 
Todd Pangborn - United States
Driven by a need and desire to create, Todd turned that need into a mechanical design and Engineering career spanning over 40 years. After the need was satisfied, he turned his attention to the desire. The desire coupled with a restlessness turned into a 17 year long sand sculpting affair. It wasn’t quick and he wasn’t always sure it would flourish but he liked how it made him feel when he accomplished something new, and he saw the looks on spectators faces as they admired his artwork. Those feeling kept the drive alive and pushed him to keep pursuing the dream.
After a brief courtship as an advanced amateur filled with success, learning and building his confidence, he stepped into the world of master sand sculptor in 2014 with the full support of his understanding wife and 2 daughters. Even though he is self-taught, the passion for art and the desire to create keeps pushing him forward. However, Sand sculpting is still just a part time endeavor that gives him a much-needed break from his typical day as a Mechanical Engineer.
Todd is also a wood carver making larger size wall hanging art as well as full sculptural carvings which he sells. He hopes to expand his wood carving and sand sculpting into retirement activities in the near future.
Abe Waterman - Canada
Abe has been creating artwork ever since he was old enough to eat crayons; he considered every new diaper a fresh canvas. Though some may still consider Abe’s output rather colorful, and he may still enjoy a Crayola from time to time, he now works mostly on ephemeral mediums, such as sand and snow.
Bruce Waugh - Canada
My Father loved to travel, and beaches were always his first choice for a vacation. Ocean, lakes, rivers it didn't matter, wiggling your toes in warm sand was always an attraction. And what did I do while Mom and Dad were sipping their cocktails on the beach? You guessed it…sand sculpting!” Bruce first got inspired by the 1987 White Rock Competition. He spent hours looking at cable TV footage in the White Rock library. He then tried his hand at it a little later, and his first piece was featured on the front page of the “Peace Arch News”.
Head Judge:
Peter Vogelaar
Over 50 years ago, Peter enjoyed many summer days playing on the beach in Parksville. He had no idea that much later in life, he would come to have great success sculpting sand above the tide line. Parksville Beach continues to be a magical place, a community that has managed to create one of the most popular sand sculpture contests on the international circuit. A six-time winner here, Peter hopes to keep adding to that total for as long as he can wield a shovel. All these fine memories, give Parksville a warm place in his heart.
Canadian Tire Learn to Sculpt Like A Pro Sculptors:
Ken Abrams
Ken began sand sculpting in Parksville in 1994 with his family in the tidal beach competition. During that first year he met a team from Victoria who qualified for the World Championships and was asked to join them. As the Sand Boxers Team they went on to win the team event many times in Parksville as well as at the World Championships! Those experiences led to sand sculpting commissions all over the world for festivals and corporate demonstrations.
In recent years Ken has worked with kids during the Parksville Beachfest, teaching the skills and tricks used to create with sand.
Michael Hurst
Mike has always been looking for a way to grow his sculpting abilities. In 1986, when Freddie and the Sandblasters were looking for a new body, Mike joined them and enjoyed success at both Parksville and Harrison. He assembled a group of friends in 1993 that had been attending the Parksville competition as spectators and wanted to try it out. The Sandboxers team started that summer in the intermediate category, then went straight to the World Championships at Harrison. Mike won the Worlds and Canadian Open numerous times as a member of the Sandboxers team.

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Master sculptors from all around the world apply to participate in Parksville’s annual competition each year.

Today Is
19 Jul 2024