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A favorite local event, the Siesta Key Crystal Classic returns for its 7th year on the white sandy beach of Siesta Key this Veteran’s Day, November 11th.

Honoring the Veteran’s Day kick-off, a welcome sculpture honoring our country’s heroes will be erected and featured at the festival entrance. The beach will be turned into a massive outdoor art gallery as master sand sculptors from around the world create gargantuan sand sculptures. Using just sand and water, these artists will spend three days creating pieces that resemble marble statues, with some standing over 10 feet tall.

Apart from the professional sand sculpting contest, there will be an amateur competition, a “quick sand” speed-sculpting competition, and sand sculpting lessons and demos. There'll be live music and shopping, too.   

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 Siesta Key's new "Learning Curve," an educational experience for kids, has been introduced this year as well; and the event is ADA accessible thanks to a beach access mat providing maneuverability around the entire sculpture garden and the presence of eight beach wheelchairs.   

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The professional competition ends noon on Sunday, which allows for viewing on Monday and Tuesday before the sculptures are cleared away on Wednesday. Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and military personnel, $5 for children, and free for kids 5 and under. Credit cards are accepted at the main entrance, but only cash is accepted at the VIP/wheelchair entrance.

This year’s festival is produced in partnership with the Siesta Key Chamber of Commerce and Mote Marine Laboratory, and supports the cultural arts while also raising awareness for sea turtle conservation.

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