Jerry and Judy Fitz-Patrick’s interpretation of The Powerful. *Photo by Amanda Dale
Jerry and Judy Fitz-Patrick’s interpretation of The Powerful. *Photo by Amanda Dale

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 7: An American couple who won a prize in this year’s Annual Sand Sculpture Competition have told of their love for Bermuda and why they take part in the contest year after year.

Judy and Jerry Fitz-Patrick won a third place prize in the contest for the third year running on Saturday.


Mr and Mrs Fitz-Patrick competed in the Tourist category with their ‘Ferry Powerful’ tugboat — a depiction of The Powerful in sand.

Their prize was a three-course meal at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess, which Mrs Fitz-Patrick described as “wonderful”.

The retired couple began watching the sand sculpture contest several years ago but in 2009 decided to take part themselves.

With granddaughter Ashley they sculpted a turtle out of the pink sand of Horseshoe Bay and won third prize in the Tourist category.

Last year they returned, joined by their grandson Hunter, to create a penguin — the eight-year-old’s school mascot. This also won third prize.

“This year, Hunter and Ashley wanted us to do it without them so we managed to pull it off ourselves, and it’s the third time we’ve won third place,” said Mrs Fitz-Patrick.

“We like watching the tug boats at Dockyard and they all have such interesting names, all implying great power, so that inspired us this year.”

The couple say they return regularly to Bermuda because of “the beauty of the island”.

Mrs Fitz-Patrick said they consider the island’s beaches to be “the most beautiful in the world”.

“The sand is so soft and doesn’t burn your feet and the water is so crystal clear,” she said.

They also love meeting the locals at the sand sculpture competition.

“The contest is great fun, I love seeing all the Bermudian families parading on the beach,” said Mrs Fitz-Patrick. “It’s a special friendly feeling and we love the creativity of the sculptures. God willing, we’ll be back next year.”

The couple, both 75 and retired, say they also feel a “special connection” to Bermuda because of where they live.

Mr and Mrs Fitz-Patrick are from Newport News, Virginia, close to Jamestown — the 17th century settlement saved by the early Sea Venture castaways in 1610.