The Indiana Insider Blog

Pirate Sand Adventure a real treat for landlubbers

What do you get when you put 200 tons of sand in the middle of an urban park space? That depends on who you invite to “play” in it.

Since July 18 and continuing through August 16 at Garfield Park on the south side of Indianapolis, Indy Parks is hosting the “Pirate Sand Adventure.” Master sand castle builders are hard at work Tuesdays through Sundays from 9am to 6pm hand-sculpting six amazing pirate-themed figures.

I took my kids to the experience on Sunday and was awed by the work of the artists from The Sand Sculpture Company. The detail on each of the creations is remarkable.

I love the pirate’s tongue hanging out as he is being squeezed by the octopus:

The flagship piece (pun intended) of the display is a 100-ton pirate ship still under construction:

The sculptors are currently working on the top layer of the ship. Once they finish that layer, they will remove the wood forms from the next layer until they expose and carve the entire ship. If the top layer is any indication, the ship will be outstanding when it is finished.

As they are carved, the sculptures are misted with a sealer to protect them from the rain and wind. The sculptors were very friendly and answered my endless questions about their work.

If the sand sculptures inspire you, there are about a dozen small sandboxes available for kids of all ages to try their own hand at sand sculpting.

Admission to the Pirate Sand Adventure at the Garfield Park Arts Center is $4.50/person or $12/family of four, $2 for each additional person. Kids ages 2 and under are free. You can pay $1.50/person to participate in a sand sculpting workshop, but I don’t think it’s really necessary.

In addition to the sand sculptures, the Arts Center is hosting a Pirate Arrrrts Show, with a variety of pirate-themed art on display.

If you’d like to make a day at Garfield Park, plan to visit the Conservatory and Sunken Gardens and the Aquatics Center. Visit the website (links above) for information on hours and fees.

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Written by : Amy moved to Indiana for college in 1988 (Go Bulldogs!) and has never left. Married with three children, she's always on the lookout for fun and affordable things to do in Indiana. Elsewhere on the web, you can find Amy at The Fourth Frog Blog and All Things Aging. Amy receives compensation from the Indiana Office of Tourism Development for blogging. For more information, see our FTC Disclosure page.