Northwest NEWS

July 26, 1999


Sandblast '99: Sculpturists will depict 'The Living River'

by Carolyn Butler, Duvall Arts Commission

   DUVALL--The beach at the new McCormick Park will transmute into an outdoor art studio for the weekend of July 30, 31, and Aug. 1 as it becomes the site for Sandblast '99.

   Under the guidance of professional sand sculptors Brett and Brita Stocker, and with artistic direction by local Native American carver Ralph Bennett, dozens of participants will help create a three-dimensional sand mural depicting "The Living River." Birds, fish, mammals, trees, brush, and even river spirits will be represented in the finished work of art.

   The theme was selected to raise awareness of the river as a living entity. The sand sculpture will feature the life cycle of the salmon that spawn and return to the Snoqualmie River.

   The public is invited to come and learn the techniques of sand sculpting and then participate in the process of carving the mural. Children will work on a smaller sand mural which parallels the theme of the main sculpture.

   Throughout the weekend, local artists will show their work at booths along the Art Walk, and live music will permeate the park. Ralph Bennett will capture imaginations as he tells the stories of the native tribes which first occupied the Snoqualmie River Valley.

   On Saturday and Sunday, there will be live entertainment on an outdoor stage on a knoll above the sandbar. Acoustic musicians, including Highland pipers, will provide a variety of music. Saturday evening will feature lyrical juggler Thomas Arthur, the Young Composer's Collective Orchestra, and a film short.

   At the booth sponsored by Children's Services of Sno-Valley and Friends of Youth, youngsters can make their own fish prints to take home with them. Sassy Sisters and Trim's Sausage Kitchen will offer tasty temptations to satisy every appetite.

   Saturday evening features special entertainment at the circus/cabaret called "Sandblast After Dark." The event wraps up on Sunday evening at 6 p.m. with an outdoor swing dance to the big band sound of Route 66, including a lesson one hour before the open dance begins.

   Sandblast '99 is a free event sponsored by the Duvall Arts Commission and the Duvall Foundation for the Arts with a grant from the King County Arts Commission.

   McCormick Park is located at NE Stephens Street and SR-203 in Duvall. Park vehicles in the parking lot and walk along the Snoqualmie Valley Trail to the new staircase that descends into the park.

   Sandsculpting activity begins at noon on Saturday and Sunday and music starts at 1 p.m. On Friday evening, Friends of Youth hosts a community talent show at Cedarcrest High School beginning at 7 p.m. The winners of the talent show will reprise their performances on the Sandblast stage on Saturday evening at 7 p.m.

   For a full schedule of events and a local map, visit the Arts Commission's website at For more information, call 425-788-9844.