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Backyard Summer Camp Watermelon Shark in 10 Easy Steps

Watermelon cut into the shape of a shark with watermelon chunks and grapes in the mouth

Who said Summer Camp was canceled? There is still plenty of s'amores, watermelon and other snacks to be had.

The kids will be talking about this all summer long!

Watermelon cut into the shape of a shark with watermelon chunks and grapes in the mouth

Step one:

Before starting wash the entire melon and towel dry.

Examine the surface of the watermelon and find the side with the least bruising and best color to be the top of the shark. The mark where the stem attaches to the melon will be cut as part of the mouth, so we'll be cutting from the other end.

Photo of a watermelon and knife, illustrating the mark where the stem attaches

Step two:

Grab a cutting board and a sharp knife, and then make an angled cut from the end of the watermelon. This angle cut will tilt the watermelon shark when it is upright, so chose the direction you cut carefully and which side will be facing upwards.

Cutting the end of the watermelon at an angle slightly off vertical

Step 3:

To help me plan the mouth shape I used a dry erase marker. Standing the cut watermelon upright, I sketched a mouth outline on the top of the watermelon around the stem mark on the rind.

Watermelon with dry-erase marker outlining a mouth shape

Step 4:

With the tip of the knife I made a small incision on the outline, then cut along the outline to remove a wedge-shaped piece of the watermelon.

I cleaned off any extra dry erase marker with a damp cloth.

Cutting along the line in the previous step, removing the segment and wiping off the marker

Step 5:

Using a small paring knife I cut a shallow outline 1/2" (13mm) around the mouth opening, piercing the green rind and not going through the white rind of the watermelon.

Cutting perpendicular to the first cut from the inside of the mouth into the white rind, cut into the white rind and follow the mouth outline to connect to the first cut and remove the strip of green rind.

This white rind strip will be cut into teeth.

Removing the green rind of the watermelon by making a shallow cut around the mouth, coming in at the corners

Step 6:

Using the paring knife I cut into the watermelon meat around the mouth opening, then carefully scooped out the watermelon meat. Cutting outlines into the meat can allow for sections of the watermelon to be scooped out in large sections.

Continue cutting and scooping out the watermelon meat until the cavity is empty, saving about an inch from the bottom. Keeping the bottom in tact allows the watermelon shark to act as a natural bowl for any juice that will inevitably collect inside.

Cutting into the watermelon flesh on the inside of the mouth and scooping out the contents

Step 7:

With the paring knife a serrated pattern was cut into the white rind around the mouth creating teeth. I started with large teeth in the middle, then reduced the tooth size towards the corners of the mouth.

Creating a serrated, tooth-like effect with the white rind

Step 8:

A fin for the watermelon shark can be made from either the mouth cut-off, or from the angled cut from the bottom.

Attach the fin to the back of the watermelon shark using toothpicks to secure it in place.

Cutting the offcut watermelon rind into a fin shape and pinning it to the back of the shark with toothpicks

Step 9:

Cut the watermelon meat into cubes Fill the shark mouth opening with the cut up watermelon, or mix it up with your favourite fruit or goodies.

Piles of grapes, sweets and watermelon chunks being put into the mouth of the shark

Step 10:

Using a melon baller, I scooped out an eye socket from the watermelon rind. I located my eye near the corner of the mouth, which I think makes the shark look a little derpy and adorable.

Experiment on eye placement before committing by holding the melon baller over the location you want the eye and take a step back and see how the face looks with your eye placement. When you're ready, firmly push in a corner of the melon baller to start the incision, then scoop the ball out in one motion to create the eye socket.

A large black grape inside the scooped out eye socket makes the beady eyeball for this shark.

Using a melon baller - a implement with a half ball cutting implement - to remove a circle of flesh for the 'eyes' of the shark

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