The Strip is home to countless events over the course of the summer. Perhaps the most eagerly anticipated is the Master Sand Sculpting Competition (603/929-6301, www.greggrady.com , late June), in which 250 tons of sand are delivered to the beach for sculptors to turn into castles, mermaids, and whatever pop culture stars are hot at the moment.
The Miss Hampton Beach Pageant (603/512-5257, late July) has been crowning young lovelies for more than 60 years. Needless to say, a swimsuit competition is part of the contest.
A relatively newer event is the Hampton Beach Idol Competition (978/458-0919, www.hamptonbeach.org , late Aug.), a three-day event at the end of the summer in which audience members vote for their favorite amateur crooner.
As a last gasp of the summer, Ocean Drive closes to traffic every Labor Day weekend for the Hampton Beach Seafood Festival (603/926-8718, www.hamptonbeachseafoodfestival.com ), a mammoth event that brings more than 100,000 people to sample the fruits of the sea—as if Hampton Beach  wasn’t a giant seafood festival year-round anyway.