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PHOTOS: Car parade for Saanich tot’s second pandemic birthday a roaring success

Sports cars, motorcycles, a garbage truck rolled down Garnet Road for Bennett Dean’s second birthday

Little Bennett Dean looked tiny compared to the vehicles that thundered down his Saanich street.

In honour of the car-obsessed toddler’s second birthday, some of the sleekest, loudest and biggest vehicles from across Greater Victoria were driven down Garnet Road at 3 p.m. on May 29. The neighbourhood buzzed with excitement as residents rushed to the roadside to watch the roaring sports cars and motorcycles. Some drivers stopped to honk their horns and wave, others dropped off gift bags and cards for the tot.

The glittering chrome, fresh paint and rumbling engines of cars new and vintage had onlookers cheering, but for Bennett, they paled in comparison to the garbage truck, excavator, school bus and HarbourCats hummer. He gazed in awe as the largest vehicles rumbled past him – waving a tiny birthday balloon.

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Bennett turned two on May 28 and this was his second birthday during the pandemic – meaning two small birthday parties – so his family wanted to make it special. Because the youngster loves “anything on wheels,” they decided to call on the community to show up for an impromptu car parade on Saturday. His father, Cameron Dean, posted on social media asking anyone with a unique vehicle to cruise by and he was blown away by the community’s kindness. His post was shared widely and the response was overwhelming.

“I can’t thank them enough,” for coming out and showing off their cars for Bennett, Cameron said. “That was really, really cool.”

Dozens of drivers took part in the parade – even Harvey the Harbour Cat made an appearance with gifts in hand and the Saanich Fire Department offered to swing by with lights flashing later in the afternoon – and made the toddler’s birthday one to remember. One can only imagine how the Deans will top this when Bennett turns three.

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