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Architects will build larger-than-life sculptures from canned food tonight at Pentagon City mall

2014 Canstruction sculpture by HGA Architects and Engineers and Balfour Beatty Construction at Reagan Washington National Airport (via Arlington Food Assistance Center/Facebook)

This evening, local architecture firms will go can-to-can in a competition to build elaborate sculptures made from canned goods.

The “Canstruction” event takes place at Fashion Centre at Pentagon City. The creations built tonight will be judged on Saturday, though shoppers can also vote for their favorite canned art sculptures through Monday.

The structures will be on display through next Sunday, when the cans will be donated to the Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC).

Fashion Centre and the American Institute of Architects Northern Virginia Chapter are putting on the event, which is one of many around the world affiliated with the hunger relief charity Canstruction. Participants are responsible for buying the canned goods, designing the structures and donating what is collected to a local food bank, according to the nonprofit’s website.

For AFAC CEO Charles Meng, events like these are a fun way for people to support the nonprofit, which gets nearly half of its food through donations.

“Food donations make up 40% of the food we distribute,” Charles Meng, CEO of AFAC, told ARLnow. “The 30,000 pounds from Canstruction will go a very long way in meeting our goal of 1.5 million pounds and in helping our families.”

“Canstruction is one of the many creative ways that professional societies like the American Institute of Architects and their Northern Virginia Chapter can help address food insecurity and have great fun doing it,” he added.

Shoppers are also encouraged to donate canned goods or cash to AFAC through QR codes at the Canstruction display through Sept. 16.

The competition moved to the mall this year after being held at either Dulles or National airport in recent years.

The winning team will advance to compete on the international stage against victors from other Canstruction events across the globe.

Photo via AFAC/Facebook

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