Weekend: The Great Sand Sculpture Contest

Castles are just the start at this 82-year-old Long Beach bash.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Great Sand Sculpture Contest
    Beyond the turrets: The Great Sand Sculpture Contest? It's been around for 82 years. Watch top competitors in the ephemeral art go bucket-to-bucket on Saturday, Aug. 16 and Sunday, Aug. 17.

    THE GREAT SAND SCULPTURE CONTEST: If you've ever watched a small, moist structure come together, grainily, on a beach, you must have an opinion or two. What makes the perfect sand castle? Is it in the detail and little touches? The height of the towers? How quickly the build goes? You can ponder these debate-spurring topics at 1 Granada Avenue in Long Beach. Saturday, Aug. 16 the professional sculptors'll be out with their tools, and on Sunday the 17th? It's the community team sculpting day. And, for sure, these artworks go way beyond the classic castle (though you might see a cameo or two).

    FRIED CHICKEN FESTIVAL: The known fact about one of summertime's perennial supper favorites is this: It is versatile. Very versatile. There are probably as many ways to coat fried chicken as there are chefs who make the dish, and there are various manners of serving it up, too (tenders, patties, and more). Want to get to know a few different tastes with some haute sides to complement the chicken's zing? Head for Chinatown on Sunday, Aug. 17. Beers and treats and more savory doings await, but, really: It's about the fried chicken, right?

    LOS ANGELES INTERNATIONAL TEA FESTIVAL: The Nisei Week Japanese Festival activities continue around Little Tokyo through the weekend, including a steam-sweet, liquid-lovely happening at the Japanese-American National Museum. Want to learn about the health benefits of tea? Need to know more of oolong? Wanting to plan a traditional tea ceremony? There is much to see, and sip, on Saturday, Aug. 16 and Sunday, Aug. 17.

    ALL ABOUT THE WILTERN: So you've seen five -- or ten -- or thirty shows at the Wiltern Theatre over the years? High fives. Now is the moment to bone up on the Art Deco landmark's history, quirks, and characters via a dig-deeper tour. Can you name the design on the ceiling? That's right -- it's skyscrapers. Truly a gem, that Wiltern. Big word, and we mean it. Sunday, Aug. 17

    AWESOME '80S RUN 5K: So all of your pastel blazers, the ones with the sleeves you can roll up, and the neon green t-shirts with the mega shoulder pads, are in the front of your closet, pressed and ready for wearing? You're in luck. A whole bunch of people are going to side ponytail it and make for the Rose Bowl, where people in the fashion-y costume of a certain decade will proceed to run five kilometers. Tunes of the era? Other quirky additions? Yes and yes. Be there on Sunday, Aug. 17.

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