“Do you know what day it is?” Sarah Anderson’s son asked her on Saturday morning. “It’s LEGO day.”
Teams of friends and family members gathered Saturday at Garfield Park in Garfield for Whitman County Library’s first-ever LEGO competition.
Anderson, Garfield Library branch manager, helped organize the event. She said the library staff plans to put on more LEGO building events in the coming months, inside or outside, depending on the weather and COVID-19 restrictions.
For Saturday’s competition, teams had 2 hours and 15 minutes to create a haunted LEGO mansion. Teams worked at multiple park benches spread throughout Garfield park, which helped distance groups from each other.
All of the haunted houses will be showcased and voted on by patrons at Garfield Library for the rest of the month. On Oct. 5, the house with the most votes will receive a mystery prize.
Anderson said the theme will change for each challenge they put on in the future.
Whitman County Library worked with Opheim Consulting President Jody Opheim to receive funding for 80 pounds of LEGOs for Saturday’s competition. Opheim said she was the one who actually came up with the idea for the LEGO challenge.
Opheim said this event was a “pilot trial” for their community. For a small town like Garfield, she pointed out that the turnout was great.
Anderson went over the competition rules, then the teams spread throughout the park and started working at the picnic tables.
There were several bins of LEGOs gathered at the rest area, with kids coming and going to pick their materials.
“They know exactly what they are looking for,” Opheim noted.
Opheim said the event was an opportunity for families to see what kids are capable of, something she feels that the community has been missing with the restraints of the pandemic over the past two years.
Opheim said people interested in joining can “just create a team and show up.” The Garfield Library is also looking for LEGO donations, which can be dropped off in person at the library’s location at 109 3rd St. For additional information, individuals can email firstname.lastname@example.org.