Artists create intricate sand sculpture at S.C. State Fair

By Karamie Sullivan

One of the returning attractions that the South Carolina State Fair offers is the huge mound of sand that two people craft into an intricate sand sculpture.

Every year the artists work on the piece for about six or seven days after the fair opens.

What people may not know, is that the same two people come to the fair every year to sculpt this masterpiece.

We have always been the ones to do this,” said sculptor Brandi Glenn. She and her husband Greg sometimes create their work based on the theme that fair staff members create. Other times, the couple gets to decide. This year, the Glenns came up with the idea on their own. The theme this year is related to nature, and the piece is not nearly finished.

Brandi and Greg begin three days prior to the fair opening. They continue to work on it every day from about 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. until they finish.

Their work consists of packing the sand down. They also have a small water hose with a piece on the end that sprays the water out evenly, keeping the sand wet while they are sculpting. Even though it is a lengthy process, Brandi says that she loves what they do.

This is the 24th year they have been making this spectacle for the South Carolina State Fair. “My husband started off doing sand sculpture contests on the beach,” she said. “I started when they were building a sculpture in front of the store I worked at. They were taking volunteers, and that was in 1987.” Their company, Sandscapes, is based in California.

Brandi and Greg travel to different events throughout the country to make their sand sculptures. Next up for the Glenns will be creating a piece in North Carolina at a barbecue festival. Brandi says they make pieces for different events including fairs, festivals, and grand openings. They do not follow the fairs, they are hired out individually for each job they do.