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Burbank youth let creative juices flow during Sci-Fi Lego class

A couple dozen youths dug through boxes of colorful Legos at the Burbank Central Library Tuesday, while deciding what to build during their Sci-Fi Lego class.

Sophia Perez, 12, was building a military base with climbing walls and obstacles in honor of her grandfather and great-grandfather, who both served in the military.

"Even though it takes a while, everything's possible with Legos," Sophia said. "If you're not a good artist, Legos are already built in the shapes they are, and you just put them together to make something awesome."

The class was part of the Burbank library's six-week teen summer reading program. This year, the theme is "Set forth! New worlds await you…" and featured science-fiction books and programming, said Melissa Elliott, senior librarian for young adult services.

During the class, each young builder had the opportunity to record a video with their Lego creations in front of two poster backgrounds of space, one featuring a space cityscape, and the other made up of Star Wars spaceships and planets.

Mentoring the students were Brandon Griffith, a professional Lego artist, and Peter Abrahamson, a roboticist, both of whom are members of the Lego User Group of Los Angeles, a club for adult Lego fans.

"Lego, for me, was a huge part of the direction I went with my life… Growing up as a kid, that was part of my understanding how to build," Abrahamson said. "To see kids make stuff is really crucial."

Among the builders were Grey Stewart, 12, who was building a robot with missiles on its arms, and Aidan Allen, also 12, who was building a hovercraft.

"I love how you can just do anything with Legos. They're limitless," said Aidan, who wants to be a scientist when he grows up. "There's no wrong way to do Legos, it just sparks your creative side."

He and a friend, Fox Melo, 11, examined the hovercraft they built, which had a driver and lots of ammunition.

"I could see some flaws in it," Aidan said. "I think we might do a 2.0 version."


Follow Alene Tchekmedyian on Google+ and on Twitter: @atchek.


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