A micro-scale LEGO city blending Canberra with other cities worldwide and builders’ imaginations is expected to steal the spotlight at the 10th annual Bricks@Woden event.
More than 50 unique baseplates or ‘city blocks’ created by multiple builders will be connected for the first time this May to form the incredible display.
Canberra LEGO User Group (CLUG) president Jake Radloff says the micro-scale LEGO city will be just one of several highlights at the exhibition, which will also feature an operational LEGO train that follows tracks extending over up to 30 tables with surrounding LEGO scenery and a so-called “great ball contraption” with motorised parts which will move balls around a LEGO circuit.
“The feedback we get each year is that people are just amazed at the variety and the creativity and the passion that a lot of our members have,” Jake says.
“We love displaying our LEGO creations, but it’s really good to do it in such a way that benefits The Woden School as well.”
By weekday, the secondary school offers specialised education to children with intellectual disabilities, but for one weekend each year, it’s transformed into a LEGO enthusiast’s dream.
Students also design LEGO-themed posters and creations that are displayed alongside more than 40 works from local and interstate LEGO exhibitors.
Jake estimates the annual event typically raises between $10,000 to $20,0000 for the school to use towards funding projects that directly benefit its students.
“One of the goals of CLUG is to promote the use of LEGO but also give back into children’s and young people’s activities in the territory,” he says.
“Some of the early members of CLUG were associated with the Department of Education … and so the idea was born from that close collaboration between a couple of community members.
“It grew from there over time and the Parents and Citizens Association of the school has been very, very proactive and very, very cooperative with it because it’s such a great initiative.”
Jake says the exhibition has grown year-on-year since its inception (except for the COVID interruption) to become one of CLUG’s most important fundraising events.
But he says the show is also beneficial for CLUG’s 220-odd members, who range from parents with children as young as four to older enthusiasts in their 80s.
“Some of the other bigger shows that we do, there’s a bit more rigour around that, whereas this show is great because they can come along [and display their LEGO creations], and it’s a little bit more relaxed and informal,” Jake says.
“So from our standpoint, that’s great for young and new people to come through, but also for our members. It’s a great sense of giving back to the community.”
CLUG’s other major annual event is the Canberra Brick Show, which will run in October and feature more than 250 works, including creations from interstate builders and LEGO masters.
The brick show will also raise funds for The Woden School and Canberra’s three other specialist schools, the Roundabout Canberra charity, and other local organisations.
Bricks@Woden will be held at The Woden School from 9 am to 4 pm on Saturday, 20 May, and 9 am to 2:30 pm on Sunday, 21 May. Register here.