On Sunday 29th July, a crowd of around 1500 visited St John Bosco Catholic Primary for the Engadine Brick Fair. This was the second year for the event, organised by the school’s P and F group in partnership with SydLUG with all proceeds going to the school.
This year’s event was a larger one with more displays attracting more visitors to the fair. Builders travelled from across the state and even interstate to display at the event, with representatives from Sydney; Wollongong; Canberra; Albury; the Central Coast, and Musswellbrook.
MOC (my own creation) highlights included Hulk’s Kitchen, the Lava Pit, a 1.5m tall tower, Escher’s Ascending and Descending, mosaics, several detailed cityscapes and farmlands, and a multitude of trains. Crowds were excited to see several vintage sets from the 60s and 70s on display, taking some of them back to their own childhood LEGO experiences.
In order to encourage creativity and imagination a kids building competition was held and the results were impressive with many entrants across all years from 1 to 6, in addition to several entertaining stop-motion films featuring LEGO. It was clear to see that the younger generation were inspired by the fair with the free building tables packed all day with young brick enthusiasts.
Engadine Brick Fair is set to return in 2019.
During the recent July school holidays 21 members of SydLUG treated Western Sydney to a free display of their brick built creations. The display ran over the two week period with builds being changed over that time to give repeat visitors something new to look at. The show, titled ‘BrickBuilt by SydLUG’, was organised with the Max Webber Library, Blacktown who hosted the display and held their own complementary building activities for children – building workshops and competitions with awards judged and presented by a Blacktown City Council architect.
Creations shared by SydLUG during the first week included 400 minifig habitats, a stunning Ode of Remembrance mosaic, monochrome towers, and themed chess sets. Week two saw a new line-up of MOCs including Bricktown Library, a detailed medieval castle, Disney’s Cars and an impressive John Lennon mosaic.
BrickBuilt appealed to the regular patrons of the library as well as attracting young families from around the greater Western Sydney area, introducing them to the limitless creative potential that building with LEGO offers. The display was visited by over 3,000 people during the holidays and is set to return to the library in the same holiday period in 2019.
On Saturday 24 June, the Croydon Public School P&C hosted SydLUG for the third annual Inner West Brick Fair. Enthusiasm for the show has not waned with approximately 2000 visitors enjoying the family day out on a sunny winter’s day. 26 exhibitors transformed the school hall with an exciting assortment of displays, an expanded city collaboration and a range of special retail items. Meanwhile, outside the hall families were able to enjoy a hot lunch prepared by P&C volunteers, tasty baked treats, many of them created in keeping with the toy brick theme, donated from resident amateur bakers or a hot coffee from the local barista. Young fans of LEGO were able to bounce off some of their excitement on the jumping castles, or enjoy the talents of a face painter.
In addition to the featured bricks in the main hall, children were able to enjoy trying their hand building their own models either in the ‘brick pit’ or the ever-popular ‘speed build’ areas, hunt for hidden Lego Minifigure posters, or take a photo with cosplayers dressed as popular comic book heroes and villains.
The event continues to be an annual highlight on the school calendar and serves to provide the community with a fun and reasonably-priced family day. This year the profits also allowed the P&C to buy robotics equipment, Chromebooks and to support the 2 day per week speech pathologist. Students across all grades have benefited from P&C fundraising at this event so having SydLUG supporting their efforts is greatly appreciated by the school.
Four members of SydLUG were excited to be included in the recent Kurrajong Hobby and Motor Show, giving them an opportunity to showcase what the LEGO hobby is all about. Taking place over two days on the 19thand 20thMay at the East Kurrajong School of Arts, the event attracted around 800 visitors.
The LUG’s display of creations made from LEGO was a popular exhibit, fitting in well with the family-friendly event that incorporated a pet show; classic and vintage vehicles; antique tools and machinery; architectural miniatures; local artists; crafts; jewellery making; woodworking and much more.
The SydLUG exhibit was awarded ‘Best Static Display’ and a great weekend was had by all exhibitors who enjoyed the chance to chat with members of the public about their builds.
SydLUG kicked off its first meeting for 2018 by combining it with a mini exhibition for Cumberland Libraries. The group took the opportunity to catch up at the Merrylands Central Library on Sunday 28 January and display some of their recent builds for the local community as the school holidays drew to a close.
Around 300 visitors to the exhibition were excited to see what the group’s AFOL builders could do. Visiting children were also treated to a free building workshop presented by SydLUG member, Pete White. The afternoon was a great success, with many young builders being inspired to enter the upcoming Kids Creation Competition run by the Sydney Brick Show. The show will take place in the April school holidays, April 21-22 at the new venue of Penrith Panthers Pavilion.
SydLUG President, Gavin Rich, said library shows are a great way to reintroduce the community to both LEGO and what their local library offers.
“Lots of people don’t know what their local library has to offer, which is so much more than books these days. Libraries are a real community learning hub and hobbies like LEGO, with so much to offer in terms of creativity, problem solving, strategy and design skills, fits right into this space”.
More shows are planned with Cumberland Libraries this year and a larger show with Blacktown Library in the July school holidays.
Thursday, 7 December saw the first ever SydLUG display for Bunnings. SydLUG stalwarts, Ray and Pete, responded to the Kingsgrove store’s request for a brick built display at their Christmas Family Night, showcasing some of their best builds across eight tables in the timber aisle of the store. (Insert bad construction pun of your choice here!)
The event was well attended with over 100 families from the local community taking part in the free activities which included a jumping castle, henna art, arts and crafts, and of course a visit from the man in red himself…
There were plenty of truly enthusiastic LEGO fans, from kids through to Bunnings staff and members of the SES, who were impressed by the SydLUG display. Pete’s ‘Pasha Bulka’ was a highlight with many fans fascinated by how long such an epic build would take to make.
More Bunnings events are in the works for SydLUG in 2018.
On Sunday 15 October, eight members of SydLUG created a Toy Brick Extravaganza at Jannali Public School to accompany their market day fundraising event. This is the second year that the LUG has been invited to display at the school and with the crowd number of 1300 doubling that of the previous year, it’s obvious that the display is proving popular.
For new SydLUG member, Max, the show held special significance, presenting his debut exhibit as an official LUG member. Max’s efforts were impressive and received much attention from the crowd. Taking his inspiration from Pokemon he created a detailed Poke ball jewellery box and an extremely accurate representation of Pokemon character, Red Gyarados. Other popular displays included the Domo, (a previous Sydney Brick Show award winner), Bricksburg, a replica of Lord Business’ lair from The LEGO Movie and the winter village build which got everyone thinking about the upcoming festive season.
A successful day was had by all and SydLUG was thrilled to be able to share their creations for the benefit of a worthy cause. Today’s students are tomorrow’s AFOLs (Adult Fans of LEGO) after all!
Described as Australia’s number one destination for pop culture fans, OzComic-Con has been running since 2012. This year marked the second year that SydLUG has been invited to display, and throughout the weekend the innovative display proved very popular among the 20,000 plus visitors to the convention, held at the new International Convention Centre in Darling Harbour.
The convention, which ran from Saturday 30 September to Sunday 1 October, was a natural fit for many of our members with their creations mirroring the cosplay outfits of convention visitors. Highlights of the brick built display included the Sentinel, Route 1 (from Pokemon), a mosaic featuring Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia and the Scooby Doo Mystery Machine.
SydLUG hopes to be given the opportunity to be part of the action again next year.