Standing in the midst of a Lego community

North Saanich family runs the table on Lego

Six-year-old Dante Dewey just loves the building blocks.

Dante Dewey and his family are the perfect examples of why the Family Day long weekend in Sidney has become such a big hit across the region.

Dante, six, is what his parents Sanjeeta and Jeremy call a master Lego builder. Their son simply loves the toy and since he really got into it two years ago, the activity has changed their household. Or at least part of it.

Jeremy says he had some friends to their North Saanich home to do a little work and thought, why not create a play area for his son. They built Dante a large table, approximately seven feet long by five feet wide — taking up much of the family den — with a space cut out in the middle to allow access to all parts of the table.

“I didn’t ask my wife,” admitted Jeremy.

‘This was supposed to be the playroom,” Sanjeeta added, “to play stuff. Well, I guess it still is.”

Jeremy found it helped add to his and Dante’s time together, working on Lego models of various sizes and sets. While he wasn’t into Lego to this extent as a child, he said Dante just loves it.

“I like it because you can build anything,” Dante said, “and you can make a whole city out of it.”

That’s what he and his dad have done. The outer edge of the Lego table is surrounded by a railway and within are blocks of buildings, roads, a Ferris wheel and a lot more. From his seat in the centre of the table, Dante can roll and spin back and forth, using his imagination to adding pieces to what he calls Danteville all the time.

His latest fascination is with the Minecraft Lego sets. Dante plays the computer game too, and enjoyed making Lego models of some of the places he’s seen online.

Jeremy said his son and him spend around an hour a day on Lego, five days a week — depending on the family’s other schedules. Dante is also involved in activities other than the building blocks, such as soccer, baseball, hip hop dancing and more. The family has seen the Lego Movie, of course, and Sanjeeta added they were in California’s Legoland last year to celebrate Dante’s sixth birthday.

It’s a lot of Lego. Jeremy said it’s not overwhelming — in fact he finds time he spends with his son building things quite relaxing. The pair worked together on a large  Star Wars Death Star model, and that took them maybe a couple weeks.

The Deweys are looking forward to Sidney’s Family Day long weekend Feb. 6 to 8. The town is all about Lego, starting with the Sidney Museum’s annual display of Lego collections and continuing from one end of the community to the other.

The Mary Winspear Centre will feature Lego building and displays at one end of Beacon Avenue, while the Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre and Sidney Pier Hotel will host events of their own.

There will be underwater Lego building and a professional builder will create a six-foot model of a Twin Otter aircraft, like those built by event sponsor Viking Air.

For more information about Family Day events in Sidney, visit distinctlysidney.ca.

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