One nice side effect of writing this weekly column is I have received tips about places I need to visit from others in the community.

Last week, I was told I needed to check out something special in Bandon - Circles in the Sand. So, my family and I did.

We made the trip to Bandon over Memorial Day weekend and located Circles in the Sand. My first reaction was surprise by the amount of people there. Hundreds of people were parked along the road, so I was eager to find out why.

I got my first glimpse while walking to Face Rock Beach. From the top, you can see the circles that are drawn on the beach. At ground level, some of the intricacies are hidden, but from the top, you can make out the detail.

The general idea for Circles in the Sand is pretty easy. Over the summer months, people gather at low tide and draw mazes in the sand at Face Rock Beach. The community, both local and visitors, are then invited to spend some time walking through the maze.

I'll be honest - walking through a maze didn't sound too exciting. But I was pleasantly surprised.

First of all, the maze is very well done. It is detailed with art an decorations using driftwood, seawood, and when we went, several U.S. flags.

But even more impressive to me was even with hundreds of people walking the maze, people stayed in the line and the maze stayed intact. It was windy and cool, but while walking in the maze, it was easy to ignore the weather.

It was mostly quiet, and gave me an opportunity to think and reflect while on an amazing beach. The sheer number of people on the maze walking silently added to the allure.

Overall, it was an amazing experience, and I reccomend it.

Circles in the Sand is free and runs all summer with a schedule of one week on and one week off. There is no cost and dogs on leashes are welcome. If you are going, head out a little early and you can watch and the maze is drawn in the sand.

A note of caution: Like most of the beaches along Beach Shore Drive, there is a hike down to Face Rock Beach from the top of the cliffs. It's not a hard walk up or down, but it could be challenging for some.

To get there from Coos Bay, follow Highway 101 past downtown Bandon and turn right on Eleventh Street. Follow it through the city park and turn left at Beach Loop Drive. Face Rock Beach will be on the right about half a mile down the road.

For a complete schedule, visit circleinthesand.com.

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