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Shuswap man finds a way to bring back beloved dinosaur herd

'I'm kind of addicted... I ended up buying more and more and more'

Itsa国际传媒檚 Jurassic Park... with bubbles.

Sicamous has taken a prehistoric turn with the recent arrival of Mark and Lois de Bruijn and their family, which includes cats, dogs and dinosaurs. The latter had many people doing double takes over the Canada Day weekend as a triceratops, T-Rex and other prehistoric pals, accompanied by a bubble machine, made their debut while cruising Main Street.

sa国际传媒淚tsa国际传媒檚 what makes me happy, makes other people happy,sa国际传媒 said Mark. sa国际传媒淚tsa国际传媒檚 just so much fun.sa国际传媒

His eye-catching trailer of animated dinos is a natural fit with his Mark4Gems rock and gem lapidary business, which is also how he got his first one. When he first started out in the rock business, he had a small company and attended a lot of flea markets where he sa国际传媒渁lways spent more money than I ever made.sa国际传媒 

sa国际传媒淚 seen a big T-Rex in the back of a truck at one of the rock and gem shows we do, and I told the wife, sa国际传媒業 want that, I want to put it in the front yardsa国际传媒,sa国际传媒 de Bruijn said of the dinosaur that started it all.  sa国际传媒淪he said, sa国际传媒業 donsa国际传媒檛 think sosa国际传媒.sa国际传媒

As the business became more established, they started attending bigger rock shows, but his dinosaur dream never died out. At one of those shows, he broke the news to his wife by asking if she remembered when he used to spend more than he made, to which she responded, sa国际传媒榳hat did you dosa国际传媒?

sa国际传媒淚 bought a T-Rex,sa国际传媒 he told her, having finally bought that original dinosaur. It didnsa国际传媒檛 stop there.

"Isa国际传媒檓 kind of addicted... I ended up buying more and more and more.sa国际传媒

In a compromise with his wife, de Bruijn kept his growing herd at their warehouse, where he also created a Family Fun Centre that became very popular. He did admit to getting one constant complaint though, with sa国际传媒淚 donsa国际传媒檛 wanna go home,sa国际传媒 a regular refrain among the kids. 

Despite the success of his business and attraction, it couldnsa国际传媒檛 withstand the downturn the market took a few years ago that caused him to lose everything. His dinosaurs went extinct. 

Having recently moved to Sicamous from Abbotsford, hesa国际传媒檚 in the process of rebuilding his rock and gem business and, as locals have seen, his dino herd.

sa国际传媒淚 noticed one of my dinosaurs for sale on Facebook... so, there we go,sa国际传媒 he said, again adding more along the way with four now installed in his truck and trailer. 

While de Bruijn said his dinos make people happy, he found that doesnsa国际传媒檛 include everyone after he got pulled over by police in Abbotsford, the one and only time that happened.

sa国际传媒淗e goes, 'what are the bubbles for?' And I go, 'because people like sa国际传媒榚m,'sa国际传媒 he recalled, managing not to add "except you."

More recently, a local dad had to face the wrath of his young daughter who was so mad at him after they missed seeing the dinosaurs in the Sicamous Askewsa国际传媒檚 parking lot because sa国际传媒渉e took too long to put his sandals on.sa国际传媒 De Bruijn said the situation was defused by driving around until they found him. 

sa国际传媒淚 really enjoy driving around in that truck and making kids happy,sa国际传媒 he said. sa国际传媒淎nd it brightens my day at the same time.

"It relieves my stress; it's the only way I can stay sane."





About the Author: Heather Black

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