By Adam Swift Over the course of nearly two decades, the Revere Beach International Sand Sculpting Festival has emerged as one of the most popular events in the state, bringing renowned international artists and hundreds of thousands of tourists from around the globe to America’s first public beach. This year, the 19th annual festival returns from Friday, July 28 to Sunday, July 30 with a suitably big theme – Kong, celebrating the 90th anniversary of the giant ape. The free event is hosted by the Revere Beach Partnership, a non-profit organization, and will feature vendors, food trucks, and a fireworks extravaganza on Saturday night in addition to the highly competitive sand sculpture competition. “This event is one of many that makes me so proud to represent the City of Revere,” said Representative Jessica Giannino (D-Revere). “The International Sand Sculpting Festival brings in hundreds of thousands of people who will have the opportunity to explore new restaurants, local vendors and a new hotel. Visitors from Massachusetts and beyond get to experience all that Revere has to offer. “I am so happy that this wonderful event on America’s first public beach continues to gain more momentum with each passing year and it is my hope that visitors will be back and bring their friends and family to enjoy all that Revere and our beach has to offer.” State Representative Jeff Turco, who is also an advisor on the board of the Revere Beach Partnership, said the event is a showpiece for Revere and the region. “It’s either the third or the fourth largest event in Massachusetts on an annual basis; over a million people will come to Revere Beach during the course of the weekend and the days after to see the sculptures,” said Turco. “Clearly, it has become a marquee event in the country, the fact that so many people from around the country come to see the sculptures, and the fact that the partnership is able to get international sand sculptors to come in is a testament to the organizers of the event and the effort they put into it.” The economic benefit of the event extends to local businesses, restaurants, and hotels, said Turco. Among the sculptors expected to participate this year are Melineige Beauregard and Chris Guinto from Hawaii, Morgan Rudluff from California, Joris Kivist from the Netherlands, and Slavian Borecki from Poland. Closer to home, Deborah Barret-Cutulle will be taking to the beach this year. Barret-Cutulle is a graduate of the Art Institute of Boston, and is a full-time artist working as an illustrator, muralist, and sand sculptor. Locals may have seen the 8’ x 96’ mural under the Sargent Street Bridge she painted. Barret-Cutulle has been attending the annual festival since the first year, and this is her sixth year competing. The 15 sand sculptors from across the world will be competing for $28,000 in prizes. For entertainment, there will be over 20 acts of street performers, live music, and special performance from Blue Man Group, in addition to various amusement rides. Vendors will include about 30 food trucks, and there will be about 20 emerging small businesses and nonprofits taking part in the Beach Shop Pavillion. For the first time, the Samuel Adams Beer Garden will offer live music, games, and entertainment from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, July 28 and Saturday, July 29 and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, July 30. The awards ceremony is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, with the fireworks scheduled to go off at 9 p.m. Saturday.