By ALEXANDREA BAILEY
Labor Day weekend was the beginning of a string of thefts at the Sandcastle Village on South Padre Island.
The Sandcastle Village is a free shaded walk-through full of large and quite impressive sand sculptures created by some of the best sand artists from around the world. Located in the Entertainment District, it is free for the community and visitors to the Island. It operates by means of donation, including the cost of bringing in artists as well as paying employees and its new monthly rent, which was established just a few days before the first theft. A donation box is placed by the entrance.
Lucinda Wierenga, the woman who operates the village with the help of two employees, one full time, one part time, says that the initial break in to the donation box occurred during Labor Day weekend, on Sunday, Sept. 3. She estimates that over $500 was stolen in this first theft, due to the increased traffic on the Island and through the Village because of the holiday weekend.
Wierenga replaced the locks twice, but unfortunately, that did not stop the next two break ins from happening that following week. The second theft happened on the night of the Tuesday, Sept. 5. According to Wierenga, an unsuccessful attempt to break into the box occurred between Wednesday, Sept. 6 and Thursday, Sept. 7. A piece of rebar was left behind by the thief or thieves, according to Wierenga. Unfortunately, another successful break in to the village’s donation box occurred once again on Saturday, Sept. 9.
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