Sawatzky's Imagination Corporation

Sawatzky's Imagination Corporation is a small family company that specializes in the design and creation of dimensional signs and environments. They tackle projects of any size from small signs to entire theme parks. Their work has garnered numerous national and international awards.


42392 Yarrow Central Road

Chilliwack, BC, CANADA

V2R 5E2

604 823 2216

Dan Sawatzky


Dan Sawatzky is best described as a creative force. He is a visual storyteller extraordinaire. His art career spans more than forty years of magic.  Dan and his crew host Sign Magic and Sculpture Magic Workshops in their studio a number of times each year with attendees coming from around the world.


Green grass and tarmac

When we started building our new house people wondered why we would build it so close to the road. Our property is 400 feet long and the house is 28 feet (3 feet more than the minimum allowed) from the road. Our logic was simple. Most people (me included) don't use ever their front yards, except when they go there to mow the grass or plant some flowers. So why make it the biggest portion of your yard? Furthermore, our fabulous mountain view is to the south (the back of the property) That's the way the biggest windows face. We built our house (and shop too) with styrofoam blocks filled with concrete. That and triple glazing in the windows means we don't hear the traffic on the road out front or noise from the shop. Our shop is 40 feet from the back of the property (the minimum allowed). In between  the two buildings is 300 feet of private yard. About one third of it is taken up with driveway, shop apron and parking. One third is (now) lush rolling grass. The last third of the property is reserved for the miniature horses who enjoy a special gravel footing. Because they are on carefully controlled diets and to keep their feet in top condition they are not on grass.

With the driveway in and much of the lawn now planted it is looking pretty much like we dreamed for so many years.

-grampa dan


Day of big change

Our property changed more visually in one day than it ever has previously. The paving crew was the first to arrive. They started at the back of the shop laying down the blacktop.

A short while later a massive truck and trailer pulled in with twelve pallets of rolled sod. Our work was cut out for us as we were to be busy all day laying sod.

Peter and the concrete carving crew were also busy sculpting rocks on the low retaining wall under the fence. The concrete started getting a little hard just before lunch and all hands were put to work getting the carving done before it turned rock hard. Here's a pic of the crew in action... Except Jack who was in the shop welding more fence.

By day's end the bulk of the sod was tamped into place and the sprinklers were on to water it in. The driveway is now in... I'll get some pics tomorrow. The property is looking pretty snazzy.

-grampa dan


More ideas?

In the theme park industry nothing is final until it gets built. Even at this eleventh hour, a couple of weeks before construction begins we are exploring every option in SkallyWag Bay Adventure Park. Based on what we observed on our last project we are looking at different ride/attraction combinations and arrangements. In a few more days things will be locked down and construction will begin... but in the meantime it is kind of fun to explore the endless possibilities. In the latest version the Treasure Quest play area got a whole lot more exciting.

The big question is... "what will the final version of the park look like?" The answer will be known soon...

-grampa dan


Big everything

We love owning a small acreage. There is plenty of room for all the things we like to do. The miniature horses have enough space they can gallop around when the urge strikes. The shop is just over 300 feet from the house which keeps the noise I make there at bay. There is plenty of room for parking for our workers along the western property line. The concrete area in front of the shop is big enough to hold all of the materials and finished projects as needed. Out back there is room for our boneyard and more storage. And the railroad circles the entire property with more than a thousand feet of track. All of it is cool!

But as we landscape we have discovered that on a small areage everything is much larger than living on a small city lot. The driveway is 400 feet long. That's a LOT of gravel and pavement too. The lawn is more than 10,000 square feet. Many hundreds of loads of soil and gravel have been trucked in and then carefully shaped to transform the flat property we purchased into a gently rolling estate. I looked at the hour meter on our little tractor and it testifies to more than 500 hours doing that job. There are hundreds of feet of fencing we have welded up and many hundreds more to go before we are done. Even the flower beds are much larger than what we were used to on our previous homes. There is definitely extra work with a larger property but the space we are privileged to enjoy is well worth the effort.

With the inclement weather forecast this morning, the paving was put off until Monday. The weatherman was wrong however and the rain held off. I spent much of the day on the tractor almost finishing up the grading of the lawn area.

Monday is going to be a very busy day with the paving crew on site and the arrival of the turf truck as well. Our crew will be doing painting, concrete work and laying the turf on the lawn. By day's end on Monday the place will look a whole lot more finished. We may just be done in time for the wedding...

-grampa dan


Making the grade

As our crew worked today the paving crew was busy setting the final grades on the driveway and doing the final packing. By quitting time the driveway was ready for the blacktop tomorrow.

Tomorrow the driveway will be done. The new lawn (turf) arrives on Monday. Things are looking pretty wild!

-grampa dan