An Aztec inspired creation brought I.B. Posse a People's Choice award over Archisand's sunken pirate ship at the innaugural U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge in downtown San Diego.
Sculpting began Saturday and concluded Sunday.
The two sandcastle teams competed in the Imperial Beach challenge category, named to honor the now gone U.S. Open Sandcastle Competition, where I.B. Posse and Archisand traded first place honors for years.
Media often ask who made it all happen, said Kent Trollen, a judge at the challenge and organizer, but the four-day event was a team effort that needed teams that played a big role in IB in the past, like Sand Squirrels, I.B. Posse and Archisand.
All three lent a hand in the days before the competition, Trollen said, preparing basic sand shapes for sand sculptors.
"If it weren't for them, we couldn't have got the event together," he said. "They all own a piece of it, cause they all helped pull it together."
The Masters category included 10 talented sand carvers from across the United States and European nations.
Top Masters honors went to Rusty Croft of Carmel, CA for his "Home Is Where the Heart Is," a sculpture of a giant heart with rooms in each chamber.