A record in the sand

Ever higher
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  July 25, 2007

Four years ago, Rockland native Ed Jarett set the Guinness Book record for the world’s tallest sand castle (knocking out the existing Finnish title-holders). This summer, he’s out to beat his own best by building a 35-foot sand castle at Point Sebago Resort in Casco. And this time around, the professional sculptor is doing it for a cause — helping to raise money for nearby Camp Sunshine, which hosts families with terminally ill children year-round.

Constructing castles in the sand has its unique challenges, namely the one million pounds of the stuff that need to be brought in from elsewhere (beach sand isn’t appropriate for this a project this size). That’s where the philanthropy comes in — for a dollar a pound, special castle-building sand is for sale, and people are buying (to the tune of 25,000 pounds, in the case of Brunswick-based Hancock Lumber!).

So far, Jarrett and his army of little volunteers (mostly campers from neighboring summer camps) have molded a 32-foot-wide octagon base that’s about two feet tall. Representatives from the local engineering firm Sebago Technics came by recently to take measurements and check that the project is going according to official Guinness code. The sand is so tightly packed that Camp Sunshine director of special events Mike Smith thinks the foundation of the castle will be around long after the record is set, which will be at the end of the summer.

And don’t worry, this isn’t just going to be any old pile of sand. Jarrett assures us that there’ll be “a dragon on it somewhere,” along with turrets, towers, and other castle-y features.

This wouldn’t be the first time that Maine hosted a world record. Here are some weird highlights from our record-holding past.

Longest lawn mower ride (from Portland to Daytona Beach).

Largest moving globe (at DeLorme mapping company in Yarmouth).

Largest pedal-powered vehicle (a “bicycle” built for 52 ridden through Augusta).

Tallest snowman (113 feet, in Bethel).

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