Friday, June 7, 2013


The North American Sand Soccer Championships are this weekend! Which is unfortunate, given the rainy weather Tropical Storm Andrea has bestowed upon us. But it should be okay, as long as there's no lightning.

My family's company does the signs for the NASSC every year, so we get invited to their vendor/VIP kick-off event. I've never been, so I went this year.

They have something like 60 fields set up on the beach, but there's one big one for the semifinals and finals:

The giant pile of sand is, as I understand it, partly a buffer from the wind off the ocean and partly a place for more people to sit. (Clyde is blocking the bleachers that are pushed up against the boardwalk - which in VB is not made of boards - which we're standing on.)

While we were at the oceanfront, we took a stroll and got photos with some of the neat things there...

This anchor is on display in front of the Old Coast Guard Station

A public art installation on one of the little sidewalks between
Atlantic Ave (which runs parallel to the shoreline) and the boardwalk

More of the fish art, but facing the boardwalk this time

Another beach art installation a few blocks down from the fish

King Neptune! We are home to the Neptune Festival, and this statue
was built in 2005 in honor of some of the Kings of the festival.
That's a sea turtle under the King's left hand, and rays behind Clyde

The Norwegian Lady. In 1891, a badly damaged Norwegian ship ran aground
on a sand bar off our shore. Some VB men (in what is now the Coast Guard) braved the
raging storm to rescue the crew (they saved 8 of the 17 men).
A young boy walking on the beach found their figurehead washed ashore.
She was set up on the oceanfront as a memorial for the crew members who died.
For 60 years, she stood there, but Hurricane Barbara (in 1953) damaged her
beyond repair and she was removed. The Norwegian Shipping Association
(in Norway) heard about it and built two statues: one came here and took
the original figurehead's place, and the other stands in Moss, Norway.
Queen Sonja of Norway came here in 1995 to lay flowers at the Lady's feet.
We have sent Virginia Beach delegation to Norway to do the same.

Speaking of shipwrecks, this is some debris from another one,
displayed outside the Old Coast Guard Station

This teeny tiny octopus "statue" is on the boardwalk railing
right next to the King Neptune statue.
He's my favorite little piece of public art in the whole city!

While I was standing next to King Neptune, I had several couples ask me to take their photo with him! They usually stand under the sea turtle because it gives you a great sense of proportion. (The King stands 34 feet tall!) They all were really apologetic but I told them, that's what I get for standing near the most impressive statue at the beach!

Finally, I took a video of Clyde with the waves. See, we don't get real waves here. We have lots of surfers, but they can't do much with what we get, unless there's a hurricane (in which case, they still can't do very much because lifeguards and police tell them to come ashore). So these are pretty impressive, for us:

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