Mike James used to love Lego as a kid. And when he stumbled across some of the colorful plastic bricks at a garage sale several years back, that love was reignited.
And now it’s spread to his entire family and inspired a new business in Kennewick.
The Brick Shoppe, at 3902 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite 110, is on track for a grand opening in January.
The store will feature new and used Lego, including sets, minifigures and loose bricks to buy in bulk. Customers also will be able to create their own minifigures, or host birthday parties there.
The inventory is vast – so vast that a large display shelf set up at the still-under-construction shop the other day represents only a tiny fraction of what will be offered once the doors open. The shelf contained everything from a 7,000-piece Viking set to Lego vehicles and numerous Star Wars sets.
James didn’t have to scramble to build up inventory to open the shop; he’s been collecting and selling Lego for years, sourcing his bricks largely from online sellers and other collectors.
In fact, his overflowing garage helped turn the shop into a reality. “Our garage is full of Lego. We needed somewhere else for them to go,” said his oldest daughter, Makayla, 25.
The new business is truly a family affair.
Mike James and his wife, Dana, are opening The Brick Shoppe with help from Makayla, plus younger daughter, Payton, 19, and son Nathen, 17. The couple’s oldest son, Riley, 26, is away serving in the military.
The local James family members will all be pulling shifts at the shop.
They wouldn’t have it any other way.
“We’re very close-knit,” Dana said, standing with her husband and kids in the shop on a recent evening, on a break from painting and otherwise setting up.
“This is bringing us even closer,” Mike said.
The couple have invested about $6,000 to open the shop, including for the cash register, tables, painting and so on. They hope the place becomes a hub for Lego fans young and old.
For the family, the Lego brand represents fun and connection.
Lego bricks get your hands and brain working. They bring smiles.
“All your worries go away,” Mike James said. “(With the shop), we hope to bring Lego to more people in the community and help them find enjoyment like we have.”
“We want to spread happiness,” Payton added.
For updates on the opening, go to thebrickshoppe.com or follow on social media.
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