As appeard 11/18/2010, Sarasota Herald Tribune
No place encourages the laid-back lifestyle of Southwest Florida more than Siesta Key — the beaches alone are enough to bring even a personality like mine from Type A to B in the blink of a sunset. And what could be more relaxing than playing in the sand like when you were a little kid?
The Siesta Key Crystal Class Master Sand Sculpting Competition (www.crystalsand.org), where Siesta’s superb sand will be transformed by master sand sculptors from across the country into phenomenal feats of sand-building — think fantastical mermaids, fearsome sea dragons and much more — officially begins today, continuing through Sunday. It is billed as potentially the largest single event ever held on Siesta Key. In addition to admiring the sculptures, visitors can enjoy demonstrations, lessons and even amateur competitions. But what’s really important is that the event benefits Mote Marine Laboratory‘s Sea Turtle Conservation and Research Program.