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Sackville Lego store appeals to kids and adults alike

They have about 500 Lego sets for sale at any given time
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The play area at Build-a-Block Retail and Parties in Sackville. (Photo via Build-a-Block Facebook Page)

Located across from the public library on Sackville Drive is a small, unassuming strip mall.

It houses a laundromat, a hair salon, and under a white sign with red lettering, Build-a-Block Retail & Parties.

The store, which calls itself "Halifax's #1 Lego reseller," houses a play area for kids, hosts parties, and of course, sells collector items.

"I'm primarily into resell. So, I don't carry any new Lego product whatsoever," says the store's owner, Troy Keats.

Keats says they have about 500 Lego sets for sale at any given time.

People can bring in their old sets and receive credit towards buying something new. And for $5, any kid can play in the play area, which displays some unique block sets.

But Keats explains it's not just for kids.

"There's a huge range of Lego lovers. There's a big group of what's known as AFOL, adult fans of Lego," he tells NEWS 95.7's The Sheldon MacLeod Show.

These AFOLs are into specialty sets like Star Wars themed packages, or superhero sets.

"It's actually quite cool," Keats says. "This isn't just a toy, they're able to keep up with the pop culture in that way and I think that's a huge part of what keeps it successful."

Keats didn't always aspire to open his own Lego store, but three years ago his life took a drastic turn.

"I was travelling a lot for work, and developed an anxiety disorder," he says. "I was off on long-term disability, looking after my newborn daughter."

When his sister emailed him, it set the ball rolling.

"I decided that I had to make a life change -- and the idea sparked," Keats explains.

Although he says like any small business there are ups and downs, the store is now nearing its two-year anniversary.

Being a business-owner now, I'm actually able to manage those stresses a lot better after going through that previous bad experience," he says.

Keats says he always tries to stay competitive, listen to his customers, and make improvements. The store even hosts birthday parties.

"It's being creative, and I guess that goes hand in hand with the Lego," he laughs.

And now, Keats' three-and-a-half year old daughter is one of his most loyal customers.

"She's absolutely loving it," he says. "It gives a whole new meaning to bring your daughter to work day."




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Victoria  Walton

About the Author: Victoria Walton

After graduating from journalism at King's, Victoria Walton now works in the film industry and as HalifaxToday.ca's weekend editor.
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