Sand sculpture in Brno

A sand sculpture in Námestí Svobody, Brno © Ricky Yates

We spent the last weekend of our recent holiday, staying with our friends Lynsey and Johnny in Brno. It allowed me to get to know the second city of the Czech Republic better, having previously only paid flying visits there to plan, and then more recently to conduct, Church services. For Sybille, it was her first ever visit.

Walking into Námestí Svobody, the main city square in Brno, early on the evening of Friday 27th July, we found that a series of sand sculptures by various artists had been created as part of what is called the ‘Golden Sand Festival’. However, despite its English name, the associated website , is only available in Czech or Slovak! But I still have been able to glean from the website that this is the third year of the festival. The first occasion was in Olomouc in 2010, whilst in 2011, it was held in Nitra, a city in western Slovakia.

On the left is a photograph of one of the sculptures whilst below are photographs of two more examples. One has to admire both the amazing skills of the various artists whilst feeling sad that they can only be temporary structures which will eventually have to be moved and destroyed.

A sand sculpture in Námestí Svobody, Brno © Ricky Yates

A sand sculpture in Námestí Svobody, Brno © Ricky Yates

Along with football, (soccer to my American readers), and tennis, the other major sport in the Czech Republic is ice hockey. Of course, to Czech people it is just hokej, as what I know as ‘hockey’, (field hockey to my American readers), is virtually unknown here. For the first time in many years, the leading ice hockey club in Brno, Kometa, won the Czech championship and the sculpture pictured below celebrates that triumph. Of course, in this day and age, the club’s major sponsor Starobrno, the local brewery, has to feature too!

A sand sculpture celebrating the recent success of Kometa Brno Ice Hockey Club © Ricky Yates

These days, sponsors are almost always needed before any artistic or cultural event can take place. This certainly is true of the ‘Golden Sands Festival’ so another sculpture featured the logos of the various organisations and companies who had contributed towards it being staged. It is a somewhat eclectic mix I think you will agree, ranging from the the city of Brno, via McDonalds, to Johnny Servis, the local supplier of portable toilets 🙂

The sponsors logos carved in sand © Ricky Yates


Much as I love living in the Czech Republic, one drawback is that it is a landlocked country, a very long distance from the sea. Therefore, alongside the display of sand sculptures, the Brno city authorities had created the ‘Brno beach’, with deckchairs and a beach bar. Somewhat illusory but still great fun!

The ‘Brno beach’ © Ricky Yates


6 comments to Sand sculpture in Brno

  • Jonathan

    Hi Ricky

    Thanks, a nice post about Brno.

    On a point of pedantry, Kometa Brno didn’t actually win the Czech ice hockey title this year. They lost to Pardubice in the final. In fact, they haven’t won the title since 1966, if my research is correct.

    The player lifting the trophy is rather confusing though. Dreams live on, I suppose.

    Best wishes


    • Ricky

      Hi Jonathan – Thanks for the correction. I did know that Kometa Brno had been rather unsuccessful for many years until this year. I also knew that they were playing Pardubice in the final. In view of the sand sculpture with the player lifting the trophy, I assumed (obviously wrongly) that they had won. A reminder yet again to always check my facts before posting 🙂

  • Love these. I grew up around Fort Lauderdale (Florida) and annual sand castle contests were a highlight of my childhood. I was amazed over the years to see the increasing sophistication of material used. But to see them move away from the coasts and to the cities like this is quite amazing. In Key West, we have a sand castle playground / playschool in the center of town on White Street — well away from the beaches. But then I guess the sand is much more consistent in texture when you can control it.

  • Very interesting, Ricky. It takes dedication to put so much effort into something as ephemeral as a sand sculpture. I’m glad you’ve captured the results in photos.

    • Ricky

      Glad you enjoyed the sand sculptures Perpetua – As I said in the post, it does seem such a shame that at some point in the relatively near future, all this work will have to be destroyed and the only record of them will be photographic.

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