May 31 2014
28th Annual AIA Houston Sandcastle Competition

28th Annual AIA Houston Sandcastle Competition

Presented by American Institute of Architects (AIA Houston)/Architecture Center Houston at Galveston East Beach

American Institute of Architects (AIA Houston)/Architecture Center Houston presents the 28th Annual AIA Houston Sandcastle Competition. On Saturday May 31st, 2014 on Galveston's East Beach, come see how piles of sand magically transform into imaginative sculptures.

For over two decades, Houston area architects, designers, engineers, and contractors have taken their tools to East Beach in Galveston for one of the world’s largest amateur sandcastle competitions. The Houston Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) sponsors this annual contest.

On the day of the event, the teams stretch along the beach meticulously sculpting their sand piles and working non-stop for five hours; their eyes (and shovels) set on winning the prestigious Golden Bucket Award. The judging of the sandcastles is rated on originality of concept, artistic execution of the concept, technical difficulty, carving technique, and utilization of the site.

In addition to the Golden Bucket, awards are given in 8 different themed categories as well as for best team t-shirt design, best team signage, best costume, and public favorite.

At the end of the day, everyone goes home with memories of a great day on the beach filled with fun, sun, sand, and sea.

This year’s theme categories are That’s Entertainment, Let the Games Begin, Stars and Stripes, Most Complex, Best Traditional, Best Architectural, Most Hilarious, and Most Lifelike/Realistic.

Admission Info

The event is free and open to the public. (For team sandcastle participation, please visit the AIA website).

Parking at East Beach Galveston is $10 cash only collected by the Galveston Parks Board. (There is no ATM close by so please be prepared). Additional parking is available at Stewart Beach with shuttle service to the event.

Phone: (713) 520-0155


Dates & Times

2014/05/31 - 2014/05/31

Additional time info:

Event Day
7:00am Beach opens for teams and sponsors
9:00am Public is encouraged to begin to arrive to watch the competition.

10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Sandcastle Building

3:00 – 4:30 pm
Sandcastle Judging

4:30 – 5:00 pm
Awards Ceremony

Location Info

Galveston East Beach

1923 Boddeker Dr., Galveston, TX 77550