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(Site Photos) Sandcastle1.jpgThe Art of Building Sandcastles

for Children,Teens & Adults


    Raid the kitchen and tool bench or go to yard sales for some effective sculpting tools: pastry and cake knives, plaster tools, trowels, paint brushes & pallet knives, dentist tools,  plastic forks & knives, child's hoe, plastic containers of varying sizes, yogurt and cottage cheese containers.  Bring them in a garbage bag so you can pack them out. You’ll need a couple of shovels and buckets too.  Each container will form one story of your castle, with largest diameters at the bottom.  Cut off the bottoms of some of your container “forms” before going to the beach.


    Choose a square site near the water, but not so close that waves will destroy your castle as the tide comes up Make a foundation. Pile up some sand with your shovel, and make a large crater on top. Fill the crater with water, and stomp it down until the sand is packed into a firm foundation. Pile on some more sand, and repeat until you have a firm, flat platform to support your first story.(Site Photos) Sandcastle2.jpg


    Fill the molds. Take your largest bottomless container and place it upside down on your foundation. Fill it to the top with sand and water and pack it down as you go. The key here is to make the sand very wet, and to compress it as tightly as possible to remove all air spaces and pockets of dry sand. Patience... let the water drain out before removing the mold.


   Once the first container is filled, stack the next largest one on top of it and repeat the process. Keep going until the smallest container is sitting on top.  When all the containers are stacked and full, and the standing water has drained away, remove the molds one at a time from the top down.


    The larger containers can be difficult to remove, so be patient. Work your fingers under the rim, and lift a little at a time. Once the seal between the mold and the sand is broken, it should come off easily. Take care not to disturb the upper levels while you remove the lower molds.


    Start carving.  Begin at the top and work your way down, so the sand you carve away doesn’t land on finished sections. Turrets, windows, battlements, stairways — let yourself go wild.


    For final touches use shells, seaweed and beach glass. Build little driftwood soldiers and make flags from other people's trash. Use crab shells and clams as sentries, or as monsters lurking in the moat. Build a moat around the castle to protect it from invaders.


Absolute Sand Castle Building Rules

  • Start with an image, and start small as you perfect your sandcastle building skills.
  • Compile your favorite tools.
  • Build a pile of sand wider and higher than the expected outcome.
  • Wet the sand, VERY WET through and through (different for different sands).
  • Pack the sand to get rid of air pockets and dry sand.  Tightly packed sand yields better castles.
  • Work from top to bottom and inside out.  Real sand castle builders remove sand to expose the castle

    You may get so good you'll decide to enter the Sand Sculpture contest in Capitola August 30, 8:30 am.
    PLEASE! Send us photos!!  Use our Family Favorites section.      Brownie
  • (Site Photos) Sandcastle4.jpg



Calendar Details


7/7-12 Music Together Summer Classes and Special Offer. Go (Icons/Graphics) LadyDetectives.jpghere.


W & Th, 7/9 & 10 after 5pm, Pepsi Discount Nights, Unlimited Ride Wristbands are just $9.95 + a pepsi can


Th, 7/10 2nd Thursday 7pm, Santa Cruz Twins Club.  Dominican


F, 7/11 Free Toddler Sports Class for 2, 3 & 4/5 year olds. Lots of fun! University Terrace Park


F, 7/11 6:30 & 8:30 Free Concert Eddie Money - "Take me Home Tonight" & "Two Tickets to Paradise"  Beach Boardwalk


F, 7/11 5:30-8 Old Fashioned Campfire for the Whole Family, Santa Cruz Mission


Sat, 7/12 11:30 am & 1pm La Selva Canta!  Live Musical Celebration of Rainforests to welcome our summer exhibit on the tropical forests of(Site Photos) z30l06_Frog.jpg Barro Colorado Island in Panama.  Performances in English and Spanish.  Natural History Museum


Sat & Sun, 7/12 &13, 3-5pm: Wetlands at Work, Help with habitat restoration. Natural Bridges State Park 

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Sun, 7/13 noon & 6pm, Amazing Chinese Acrobats, Beach Boardwalk.  See calendar for dates and times.

Calendar Details




(BUILT IN) (Icons/Graphics) MainstreetMamaCrop2.jpgTues, 7/15, 7-9pm

Bellies, Birth & Babies Summer Expo

Sponsored by Birthnet


    Join us for the Summer Expo at Simpkins Family Swim Center Community Room (979 17th Ave).  The evening is packed with positive energy and valuable resources for pregnant and postpartum women and their families. We will be showing the DVD “It’s My Baby, My Body, My Birth.”  This event is always free to the public, (donations welcome).  For a great variety of resources for the expecting family, visit BirthNetwork.


Look for these doulas at the Expo (Icons/Graphics) MomwithBaby2.jpg

Kymm Ann Wallin, 

        Luzita Davila  

            Veronica Wagner

Read about them here.


(Site Photos) TallShip.jpgWeds, 7/16 6-8pm Twilight Concert Capitola Beach


W & Th, 7/15-16 The California, a Tall Ship, is Coming! Monterey Harbor

Find out how you can sail aboard The Californian.


calendar details


Library Story Times, Groups, Music and More!


Thursdays 10:30am Story Time! Jelli Beanz


Thursdays, 7pm New Support Group for Moms with Bipolar Disorder


Mondays, 11am Story Time with Billie Harris, Capitola Book Cafe


Wednesdays & Thursdays, 9:15 & 10:30 Mothersong with Joya, back at Unity


More Library story times are here.


Save these dates!


7/17-20 California Rodeo, Salinas


7/18-9/2 Shakespeare Santa Cruz


7/26 Sommerfest, Tyrolean Inn


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Seymour Center

Marine Life

Be In Your Own Band

for Teens & Tweens

who like making music!

Fresh Prep Kitchens

Meals in Minutes

Jelli Beanz

Clothes, Toys, Furniture

Baby Bloomers

Clothes, Toys, Furniture

American Red Cross


Kathy Runyon, Broker

Real Estate

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Savvy parents

have time to

build sand castles

with their families

when prepared dinners

from Fresh Prep Kitchens

are waiting at home!

Check out

Fresh Prep Kitchen's

July 7-12 Special


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Barbara Lawrence

Ravine with Cows, 2007


Come to the

Plein Air Affaire


Saturday & Sunday

11am - 5pm


Quick Draw Event Sunday,
July 13 from 9am-11am
Plein Air artists will "quick draw" in downtown Santa Cruz and San Lorenzo Park on Sunday morning from 9am - 11am.  The artists will gather at The Museum of Art & History afterwards for their work to be judged. An award for the best quick draw will be presented at 1pm Sunday afternoon.

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Save the Date!


July 26, 3-10pm

Tony Raymann's Eidelweiss Band


Beer Stein Holding Contests

Pretzel Counts

Bounce House

Arts 7 Crafts

Festival Menu!

9600 Hwy 9, Ben Lomond


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Swim Classes,

Nearby Adventure Weekends

for Families

Go here

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Summer and Comics

go together, right?!

Clubhouse Comics

is having a Sale

with Fantastic Discounts

Star Wars


Graphic Novels

Soquel near Branciforte, SC


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Buddies at Play!


Thank you for your comments and "thank yous"!

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Santa Cruz, CA