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Saanich family plans car parade for toddler’s second pandemic birthday

Vintage car owners, truck drivers commit to making Bennett Dean’s second birthday special
Bennett Dean will turn two on May 28 and his family has planned a surprise car parade the following afternoon at 3 p.m. on Garnet Road in honour of his big day. (Photo courtesy Cameron Dean)

Calling all vintage car collectors, truck drivers and lowrider owners.

Bennett Dean turns two on May 28 and the car-obsessed Saanich toddler will be getting the surprise of his life the following afternoon when a parade of cars, gravel trucks and other vehicles cruise down his street.

Cameron and Teagan Dean have planned a car parade on May 29 for their son Bennett's (second from right) second birthday with brothers Logan 8 (left), and Jaxon, 7 (right). (Photo submitted by Cameron Dean)

The youngster celebrated his first birthday in the middle of the pandemic and restrictions at the time resulted in a tiny party with only members of the household present. Now that the province is allowing small outdoor gatherings, Bennett’s family decided to make his first real birthday party one to remember.

READ ALSO: Saanich firefighters mark 100 drive-by birthdays for kids amid the pandemic

Whether it’s a bike or truck, he loves “anything on wheels,” his father, Cameron Dean, told Black Press Media on Wednesday.

The family decided to plan a personal car parade and Cameron took to Facebook to ask locals with fancy cars and interesting vehicles to roll by their home at 1696 Garnet Rd. in Saanich at 3 p.m. on May 29.

“I didn’t intend to have it be this huge,” he said, noting the event has been shared all over social media. The family has been blown away by the community’s kindness, he added. Within three days, his post had been shared more than 90 times, with dozens of commenters promising to drive by in their Trans-Ams, Cadillacs, Corvettes and motorcycles.

READ ALSO: Community surprises Saanich boy with car parade on seventh birthday

Members of a local lowrider club who’ve been missing car shows amid the pandemic also reached out, offering to come by for Bennett’s big day, and Harvey the Harbour Cat is scheduled to make an appearance in the baseball team’s Hummer, Cameron said. He’s hoping to arrange for a Saanich fire truck and police cruiser to come by as well.

Whether people need an excuse to take their vintage cars out for the day or simply want to drive by in their regular vehicles with signs, all are welcome to join in and help Bennett celebrate.

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