Wonders of Sand
This weekend marks the 18th annual Wonders of Sand Festival in Gatineau’s Parc du Lac Beauchamp. Located at 741 Maloney Est, and running from Friday, July 5 through Sunday, July 7, you can discover and learn about the technical and very creative aspects of sand sculpting.
Created in 2001, the festival attracts about 15,000 participants each year, including professional sand sculptors. Workshops led by the pros will teach you how about the special characteristics of sand that is used in sculpting (did you know the grains are square?), and how to create your own masterpieces. There are several competitions divided into three categories – for professionals, non-professionals, and a family category. You may submit your design at the festival’s website to see if you can compete, and possibly win!
Each year, approximately 200 tonnes of sand is brought in by the truckload for the sculptors to use. Once the festival is over, the sand is removed to avoid long-term damage to the environment.
Although its official title is the Wonders of Sand, in 2013, a water adventure park was added to the festival. The Aquazone is sure to be a big hit, especially with the hot temperatures in the forecast for the weekend. Twenty inflatables, plus concrete canoes, water gun battles, and water raft races will help you cool off after being in the sun.
Admission to the festival itself is free, however, there is a $10 charge to The Aquazone for those over the age of 7.
A parking fee of $10 will cover you for the whole day. Hamburgers, hotdogs, and various other snacks will be available for purchase. The park does have a water fountain, so if you bring your own bottle, you can refill as often as you need, without charge.
The festival hours are Friday, from 10 am to 5 pm, Saturday, from 9 am to 6 pm, and Sunday, from 9 am to 4 pm.
Don’t forget to pack the sunscreen!