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Lincoln City's Extravagant Beach Art Contest: Oregon Coast Sands Become Masterpiece

Published 07/28/23 at 6:21 a.m.
y Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Lincoln City's Extravagant Beach Art Contest: Oregon Coast Sands Become Masterpiece

(Lincoln City, Oregon) – Sometimes, the beaches make the most incredible canvasses for art – what the Cascade Head Biosphere Collaborative called the “intersection of art and nature.” Next week, on Saturday, August 5, Lincoln City's sands become a unique sand art competition called “Art on the Beach,” put together by the Oregon coast's UNESCO Biosphere Region and Marine Reserve at Cascade Head.

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Artists of all ages are invited to hit these sands, where cash and other prizes are the awards for creating a masterpiece of one kind or another.

The competition’s theme is “upwelling” - the oceanic term for a life-giving dynamic in the ocean, which also causes fascinating things to wash up on the Oregon coast. Artists use sticks, rakes and other objects to conjure forth their favorite oceanic aspect, including creatures like crabs, octopuses or seals. There's no previous experience necessary and the hosts will have extra rakes onhand.

Head to Roads End State Recreation Site at the end of Logan Road in Lincoln City. The event begins at 8:30 a.m. - look for the white tent.

Is this like a sandcastle contest? Not quite.

“Sand art is different from traditional sand castle building in that the artists utilize rakes to create art that transforms beach surfaces into large-scale, ephemeral masterpieces,” said organizers. “Artists rake the sand into patterns and shapes, creating everything from simple geometrical designs to complex and stunning representations of natural or abstract themes.”

Duncan Berry, Co-Director at Cascade Head Biosphere Collaborative, said Lincoln City's Art on the Beach is more than an art competition, it's a celebration of Lincoln City's connection with the Cascade Head Biosphere Region.

Berry is also the event’s featured artist, and gathering with him will be a team of volunteer rakers to spell out the word “biosphere.” It's all rather large-scale stuff, really only becoming truly apparent when drones snap pics of it from above. Participants are invited to make their striking Oregon coast moments in a 20'x20' area. Organizers said that's 400 square feet – or about 400 million grains of sand to play on.

The Cascade Head Biosphere Region is an UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme site located on the Central Oregon Coast of North America. Originally designated in 1976, the newly reauthorized Cascade Head Biosphere Region includes the Salmon River and Estuary, the Cascade Head Marine Reserve, and the City of Lincoln City, Oregon. The Cascade Head Biosphere Region has a prolific diversity of wildlife including black bears, cougars, bald eagles, peregrine falcons, five species of salmon, migrating gray and humpback whales, and four federally listed endangered species: the spotted owl, marbled murrelet, coho salmon, and Oregon silverspot butterfly. Learn more at

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Andre' GW Hagestedt is editor, owner and primary photographer / videographer of Oregon Coast Beach Connection, an online publication that sees over 1 million pageviews per month. He is also author of several books about the coast.

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