Lego wins new fans at first Saudi Ara­bian show

Arab News - - SAUDI ARABIA -

Saudi Ara­bia’s first Lego show has won a new gen­er­a­tion of fans for the world’s most fa­mous toy brand.

The event, which is be­ing held at the King Khalid Ex­hi­bi­tion Hall at Hokair, fea­tures sym­bols of Ara­bic cul­ture as­sem­bled us­ing plas­tic Lego blocks.

In the “Souq,” a life-size model of an Ara­bian man wears a gold neck­lace and jewelry, and stands next to a fal­con proudly perched on a stand.

Hands-on ac­tiv­i­ties, demon­stra­tions and ex­hibits are an im­por­tant part of the show, with booths sell­ing Lego prod­ucts suited to ages 3 and above.

Zeina Al-Hashimi, a mem­ber of the Exit or­ga­niz­ing group, said: “This is the first time the Lego show has been held in Saudi. There are more than 25 ac­tiv­i­ties in the event.

“The Lego store con­tains Lego that isn’t avail­able in Saudi and is im­ported from abroad,” she said.

One of the vis­i­tors to the show, Nouf As­siri, said she had brought her son as a sur­prise. “He is ab­so­lutely crazy about Lego,” she said. “He was so ex­cited when we ar­rived — he couldn’t be­lieve the num­ber of Le­gos in one place.”

Stud­ies have shown that Lego of­fers chil­dren many ed­u­ca­tional ad­van­tages, and can help de­velop fine mo­tor skills, and co­op­er­a­tive and so­cial play.

Mo­hammed Al-Gathawi, a 14-year-old stu­dent vis­it­ing the show, said: “I love Lego more than you can imag­ine.”

Manohar Raju, a col­lec­tor, said: “Lego in­vites col­lec­tors to these events from all over the world. I’m one of them. I do Lego trains.”

Es­tab­lished in the work­shop of Ole Kirk Chris­tiansen, a Dan­ish car­pen­ter who be­gan mak­ing wooden toys in 1932, Lego came into be­ing as a com­pany in 1934. Its name was de­rived from the Dan­ish phrase “leg godt,” which means “play well.”

How­ever, pro­duc­tion in plas­tic only started in 1947. In 2015, Lego re­placed Fer­rari as the “world’s most pow­er­ful brand,” ac­cord­ing to Brand Fi­nance.

The show con­tin­ues un­til March 31 and is open from 2 p.m. un­til mid­night daily.

Mil­lions of Le­gos were scat­tered on the ground for kids to en­joy freely. (AN pho­tos)

The Souq area con­tained lego pieces that were as­sem­bled to rep­re­sent Ara­bian Cul­ture.

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