U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge to be on Olympics Team USA tour Sept. 4-7

Yes, the Summer Olympic Games are in Rio in 2016, but did you know they’re making an advance stop in San Diego?

The U.S. Olympic Committee is sending its “Road to Rio” interactive exhibit to be part of the U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge on Labor Day weekend.

And World Master artists will theme their sand sculptures around the Olympics as well.

Team USA selected San Diego’s signature event as one of only three stops on its tour in 2015 because it was named one of USA Today’s 10 Best events of its kind and has become one of the world’s most important sand sculpture competitions.

Sculptors from Italy, Ireland, the Netherlands, Canada, Singapore and Russia (for the first time) are coming to challenge the best Master Sculptors in the States. Along with national pride, $60,000 in prize and appearance money is at stake.

While it takes two full weeks from start-up to tear-down (including bringing 300 tons of sand onto downtown San Diego’s cruise ship pier), the public has just four days to see the sculptures, from Sept. 4-7.

“Road to Rio” interactivity takes place on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 5 and 6. Virtual-reality technology will enable fans to experience pole vaulting, beach volleyball, gymnastics and diving, and capture their own personal Olympic moments.

Notable Event Elements

The U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge — 23 amazing sand sculptures, many themed to the Olympics

The U.S. Olympic Committee’s “Road to Rio” interactive exhibit, open Saturday and Sunday only

The Dimensional Art Exposition — over 1,000 one-of-a-kind original works of art (metal, wood, glass, jewelry, handmade clothing, wall art, acrylic, fabric, gemstones, etc.) on display and for sale

Family Fun — Kid Zone with rides and sand castle building lessons taught by professional artists

15 gourmet food trucks and a beer/wine garden

Live entertainment all weekend long

Children’s Educational Charities

A significant portion of proceeds from the event go to:

The San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts

Young Audiences of San Diego/Arts for Learning

It’s All About the Kids Foundation

The Maritime Museum’s Children’s Education Program

U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge, a Labor Day Weekend-Long Festival

Sept. 4 – Sept 7 at B Street Pier, 1140 N. Harbor Drive, downtown San Diego, CA 92101


Friday (Preview and First Responder Appreciation Day) Tickets:

Active duty military, Police, Fire, EMT with I.D. — Free

Family members and everyone else (all ages) — $6. Save: Go to

Toddlers (under 2) in strollers - Free

Saturday, Sunday or Monday Single Day Tickets:

Adults (13-62) — $11. Save: Go to

Adults showing MTS pass or ticket — $9

Kids (under 12 years), seniors, military and first responders with I.D. — $9

Toddlers (under 2) in strollers — Free

Everyday Four-Day Tickets:

Adults (13-62) — $19. Save: Go to

Adults showing MTS pass or ticket — $17.

Kids (under 12 years), seniors, military, first responders with I.D. — $17.


Private preview meet-the-sculptors party and everyday access; on-line only — $53.75.

Save time and money. Buy tickets on-line at


Friday — 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

Saturday — 9 a.m.-9 p.m.

Sunday and Monday — 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

More Event Info:

U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge Producer / Sponsorship Contacts:

Joyce Summer - – 619-980-6651

Gordon Summer - – 619-994-3752

Media Contacts – c3 Communications, Inc.

Joice Truban Curry - - 858-794-6974 / 619-540-6611

Sean Curry - - 858-794-6974 / 858-449-6282

We invite you to please find more information and pictures of the sculptures at