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.

David Ducharme, Canada & Susanne Ruseler, Netherlands
Susanne started sand sculpting in 2003, while living in Utrecht and discovered that she loved creating sculptures. Susanne started her own sculpture company, working with materials such as snow, ice, foam and concrete. She travels around the world working on projects, taking part in events and competing.
In 1987 David started sand sculpting with his brother and friends as the Wazoo Warriors. They won first in the intermediate class! David was hooked and has competed every year Parksville has had a competition. “I love the ease of carving, simplicity, quietness, and beauty on a sandy shore somewhere in the world”.
Dean Murray & Wade Lapp, USA
Dean Murray is a sand sculptor as well as world champion ice carver, renowned pumpkin carver and food artist.
Wade Lapp is a sand sculptor, chainsaw carver, pumpkin carver and world champion ice carver.
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.
Fred Dobbs, Canada & Ted Siebert, USA
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.
Matthew & Ian Deibert, USA
Living close to the beaches, Matthew spent his childhood playing in the sand. Showing an interest for the arts as a child, sand was a medium readily available and affordable. But it wasn't until some time after the birth of his oldest child, Ian, that he really took an interest in sand as a competitive art form. Matt is a retired firefighter from Atlantic City, NJ and is married with 6 children.
Ian was introduced to professional sand sculpting early on as he experienced his dad's career second-hand. But after graduating high school and seeing his dad win the World Championship Doubles category, this took on a more hands-on application and has continued ever since. Ian works full-time in countertop production and is married with 4 children.
Both sculptors have a BA in Graphic Design and have dabbled in many mediums (illustration, design, film, print produtcion, etc) but between the two of them, their sand career and accomplishments have spanned multiple countries and a combined 3 plus decades. Their work has been featured more than once in cometition on the Travel Channel and they have gathered (together and individually) many placements in master level competitions while working with and against some of the most talented sculptors in the world.
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. 
Bouke Atema, Germany
Biology and arts were always a big influence from a kid throughout Bouke's life. After finishing the craftsmanship of carpentry, ship interior crafts and interior design, Bouke explored the history of old restoration methods and used these techniques in his own work. Studying at the School of Arts he worked with professionals who introduced him to sand, snow and ice sculpting. Bouke is also a professional photographer and is currently studying ornithology, which allows him to work with the best avian photographers in Europe.
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.
Dan Belcher, USA
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 this 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 around the world including Japan, China, Denmark, Italy, Australia, Great Britain, and many other wonderful destinations. He loves the balance of the physical and creative sides of working with sand. He is relatively new to friendly, competitive world of snow sculpting competing with Team Florida at the Nationals in Lake Geneva, WI in 2022. He is also a Landscape Architect with a degree from Kansas State University. He has been a professional brewer and has run a few marathons when his schedule allows.

Wiaczeslaw (Slava) Borecki, Poland
Slava is a freelance sculptor with over 30 years experience. After graduating he worked in the Sculpture Department at the Academy of Fine Arts in Poznan. Since 1996 Slava has participated at multiple sand, snow and ice sculpture festivals and competitions all over the world. Slava also works with bronze and stone and his work has been shown in individual and collective exhibitions across Europe.
Francisco Calvillo, Mexico
Since 2008, when he ventured into sand sculpture, as an independent artist, he shows his work permanently on the boardwalk in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico, with a wide variety of cultural and artistic themes. Already considered a tourist attraction for the city, he has collaborated in tourism promotion, advertising, social awareness, and environmental campaigns, with governmental and non-governmental institutions, private companies, and NGOs. His work has been requested for movies, TV series, digital media and for the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the founding of Puerto Vallarta.
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 Jean 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.

Marielle Heessels, Netherlands
Marielle discovered sand sculpting after years of painting and sculpting for museums, which turned out to be her biggest passion. Sculpting allows her the opportunity to imagine and create with head, hands and heart as well as travel the world and work with beautiful people everywhere.
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, USA
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.
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.”
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’. 
Peter Vogelaar, Canada
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.
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:
Charlie Beaulieu, USA
Charlie began sand sculpting 30 years ago on the beautiful beach of Northwest Washington State. He has placed 1st at 12 World Championships, earned numerous American and Canadian titles, broken a few world records, and been featured on multiple TV shows (and hated it). He is now the Executive Director of World Championship Sand Sculpting and the Head Judge at the Parksville Sand Sculpting Competition! Charlie brings his many years of experience as well as his innovative, cutting edge, and creative ideas, many of which were stolen from other world class sculptors, the library, and the internet.
Canadian Tire Learn to Sculpt Like A Pro Sculptors:
Ken Abrams, Canada
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.
Mike Hearst, Canada
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
20 Apr 2024