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Photos: Inside the Legoland model shop

CNET News.com becomes the envy of every Lego geek as we get the chance to hang out behind the scenes at Legoland California.
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The Model Shop

The workers in Legoland California's model shop are responsible for building and maintaining most of the Lego creations found around the 128-acre theme park in Carlsbad, Calif.

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Walls of Lego bins

Throughout the model shop, there are hundreds upon hundreds of bins, each of which is full of a single type of Lego brick in a single color.

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Grizzly with raccoon

Senior model designer Tim Petsche said his favorite model, and the one he spent the most time on, is this grizzly bear with a raccoon on its head.

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Freedom tower

Legoland California's miniland contains thousands of models of real-life buildings. Its Freedom Tower is the only building that doesn't exist in the "real world" (yet).

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Very small Freedom Tower

Before building the Freedom Tower for the Legoland California miniland, the theme park's master model builders worked with small prototypes.

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Table full of models

Nearly every inch of flat surface space in the model shop is being used for one Lego model or another.

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Tim working on model

Senior model designer Tim Petsche working on a large model for Legoland California's forthcoming Pirate Shores attraction.

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Half built person

Throughout the model shop are models of all kinds, including many that are incomplete in one way or another.

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Bin of cars

On the floor of the model shop, looking forgotten, sits a box full of finished yellow taxicab models.

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Esoteric bricks

Hidden among the model shop's hundreds and hundreds of bins are those that contain esoteric "bricks" like hats, animals and snowboards.

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Time out

Hidden in a far corner of the Legoland California model shop is a small Lego man looking like he's taking a time out.

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Execution scene

The model shop builders like to have fun and work on models that will never make it into Legoland proper. One example is this execution scene replete with couches and a coffee table for comfortable viewing.

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