Over the summer holiday period SydLUG has had time to take a breath and reflect on the amazing achievements of our group during 2019. The year was a busy one, full of public displays of all kinds.
SydLUG provided displays for 31 events as follows:
3 school fetes
5 hobby conventions
10 community festivals
13 LEGO fan exhibitions
This resulted in over 95,000 people seeing SydLUG’s creations and the incredible amount of over $107,000 being raised for schools, charities and other Not-For-Profit organisations.
2020 is off to a good start for the LUG with two public displays having already taken place. On January 14, SydLUG put on a small display as part of the school holiday activities at Guildford Library, continuing a successful partnership with Cumberland Libraries and expanding to a branch that we had not previously visited. More library events are planned for later in the year, showcasing the skills of the LUG’s members while attracting visitors to an important and valuable community resource centre.
On January 16, SydLUG was involved in a Family Building Challenge for Springwood Anglican Churches in the Blue Mountains. This was a new event for the group, where we provided displays and judges for the build competitions. It proved to be a fantastic day of family friendly fun for the local community.
Members of SydLUG also attended Australia’s largest LEGO fan event, Brickvention, in Melbourne. We were very proud to announce that a medieval castle collaboration by three of our builders – Rod, Gavin and Josh – picked up three awards at the event including People’s Choice and Sponsor’s Choice.
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Returning to the St George Brick Fair for the fourth year, members of SydLUG were happy to help raise funds for Hurstville South Public School. Over 20 members displayed on Sunday, November 3, with the debut showing of a Star Wars themed Hoth base and a cluster of medieval buildings. Visitors to the show were also able to get a sneak peek of SydLUG’s collaborative build projects for 2020 – apartments and a new minifig habitat structure.
SydLUG went on to do two first time public displays in November, the first being at the Yarrawarrah Public School 50th anniversary fete on Saturday 16. The second was the Thornleigh West Public School Movie Night held on Saturday November 23. In addition to providing displays SydLUG members judged the children’s building competition.
The year isn’t over for SydLUG yet, with a couple more public shows to see out 2019, including the Hornsby Shire Brick Fair on December 8, raising money for a very worthy cause, Ronald McDonald House.
As we near the end of the year SydLUG continues to be busy showcasing their brick building expertise. On the 10thof October members provided a school holiday display at Merrylands Library making this the third Cumberland Libraries event for the year. SydLUG is proud to support the library service and will return in 2020 for more events in the Cumberland Council area.
October 19thsaw SydLUG return to the Oatley Lions Village Festival for the second year. The public support and interest in our hobby was evident with a great local building competition taking place between two local schools, and being judged by the local MP, David Coleman.
The month drew to a spooky close with a display at the Kingsgrove Bunnings Halloween Family Night on October 31st. Over 100 families were in attendance, including dozens of children in Halloween costumes. The SydLUG display featured a zombie attack, Halloween Vignettes and a brick full of spiders. It was scarily fun! SydLUG will return to Bunnings for the Christmas Family Night on December 5th.
Spring for SydLUG started with a 2 day pop-culture event at
the University of Sydney.
The inaugural PopFest was held on September 11th & 12th across several locations at the Darlington Campus featuring arcade games, table-top games, artist & hobby stalls, cosplayers, photo ops, celebrity talks, and a few MOCs by SydLUG members.
Following was Ryde Brick Fair on September 15th
being held for its 2nd year.
The event was again well supported by its local community
with 30 entries in the kids building competition and attracting over 2000
attendees with all funds raised going to Ryde East Public School P&C.
MOC highlights were the debut showing of SydLUG member Max’s
Red Gyarados diorama featuring his unique cobbled path technique and the city
collaborative centrepiece transitioning from airport to train shed to SpongeBob’s
The month was wrapped up with SydLUG’s largest ever event,
South West Sydney Brick Fair held on September 28th & 29th
at Crossroads Homemaker Centre.
Featuring over 100 MOCs from detailed dioramas to mosaics to
unique mash-ups to scale model vehicles, it was a weekend of great family
entertainment to start off the school holidays.
This event was only possible with the generous support of
Crossroads Homemaker Centre and we thank them for this opportunity.
SydLUG’s first public event for August saw three of our northern members excited to put together the LUG’s first display at the ‘Our Town Model Show’. The event was a scale model exhibition held at the Newcastle Racecourse over the weekend of August 17-18. The impressive train layout was extremely detailed and attracted lots of attention.
On the same Sunday other LUG members took part in another first-time event, the Georges River Brick Fair, raising over $8,000 for Oatley Public School. The family-friendly event was attended by over 1,000 members of the public and received 55 entries in the kids’ building competition.
The second big fundraising event for the month was held on August 25, the Helensburgh Brick Fair and was again, an inaugural brick fair for the area. Crowd numbers were over 1,200, raising over $6,000 enabling the Helensburgh Lions Club to fund projects for local schools: Helensburgh PS, Holy Cross PS, Waterfall PS, Otford PS and Scarborough PS. The success of the event will see SydLUG return to Helensburgh next year.
The month concluded with a return to the Kingsgrove Bunnings store for their Father’s Day Family Night on August 29. Locals escaped the wet and windy weather with an in-store party for dads including a South Pacific concert band, massages, petting zoo, inflatable games, kid’s crafts, food, and of course our awesome display of brick-built creations!
SydLUG will be back for a Christmas family night later in the year.
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.
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.