LEGO Event “Brickish Weekend” at UK’s National Space Centre in Leicester this Saturday

While a member of the European Space Agency (ESA), the UK has a national space agency all their own: the executive-level UK Space Agency (UKSA). In addition, there’s an educational resource museum in Leicester, the National Space Centre that exhibits a number of historical spacecraft plus related technologies and facilities.

The NSC also has a partnership with the UK-based LEGO-building AFOL community the Brickish Association. For nine year past they have hosted an annual event called the Brickish Weekend, where they fill the National Space Centre with a colorful exhibition of awesome tabletop builds of various subjects and tile-mosaic art.

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For this year, the tenth Brickish Weekend event at the NSC will take place right at this weekend, from March 16 to 17. Once more the Brickish Association builders will put their best foot forward with their anticipated LEGO exhibits.

Their displays will include a dedicated gallery featuring official and MOC space-related LEGO sets and builds, fitting for the venue. Whether based on real spacecraft or the fancies of the imagination, these exhibits will form the central core of the event, which will also feature official and custom creations of every other LEGO theme available.

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Brickish Weekend will offer guest activities too. Visitors will be able to play with LEGO bricks at provided building tables. A LEGO mosaic will also get guests to contribute tiles to complete the giant image.

This annual tradition at the National Space Centre in Leicester will definitely enhance the space history experience that the museum is already famous for. Tickets for Brickish Weekend can be booked at the official website.

Anniversary Dance Party with New Minfiigure Mascots for 20 Years of LEGOLAND California

Before going into a period of accelerated expansion in the current millennium, the LEGOLAND theme parks were a rare sight. While the original resort in Billund, Denmark was opened in 1968, it wasn’t until the nineties that more were built. LEGOLAND California in 1999 was the third, and the first in the US, outside Europe.

Next week, LEGOLAND California Resort will be two decades old. While special treats have already been announced, like free admission to children aged 3-12 on their 2019 birthdays, the Merlin Entertainments-run theme park has only just begun. More attractions for the anniversary are still coming.

For example, starting this weekend on March 16 until September 1, there’s going to be a special dance party attraction in LEGOLAND California. Even better, it’s going to be headlined by two new minifigure character mascots for the resort. They’re a pair of everyday minifigure teens named Jake and Emily.

Jake and Emily are, as stated, young LEGO minifig characters wearing “I *L-brick representing a heart* LEGOLAND” shirts. Their names are taken from a survey of the most popular children’s names in the US from 1999, when LEGOLAND California opened.

The 20th Anniversary Dance Party will see Jake and Emily leading a troupe of dancers in a medley of musical numbers, complete with bubble showers and a 7-foot tall anniversary cake made out of LEGOs. Oh, and on March 20 (opening anniversary date), the first 1,000 children to visit there will receive a set of minifigure costume hands absolutely free.

For other events being added to LEGOLAND California, there will be a new “LEGO Friends: Better Tomorrow” show as well as another movie for the 4D cinema, “LEGO City 4D – Officer in Pursuit.” For more details on all these, visit LEGOLAND California Resort’s official website.

Expansive LEGO Mount Rushomre Build Featuring at BrickUniverse Event at Raleigh, NC

LEGO-related news lately has been featuring some impressively large MOC builds. This week if you can recall, we covered a tabletop LEGO roller coaster and playground set that’s fit to earn a Guinness World Record. That MOC by James Burrows is also scheduled to go on the road for exhibition.

Speaking of which, Raleigh is hosting the BrickUniverse LEGO Fan Convention again this year, and on the coming weekend to boot. Like its official website says, we can expect plenty of big builds being showcased for participants and guests. One of them is a stunning scale copy of Mount Rushmore.

Created by Rocco Buttliere, a LEGO builder for Chicago, the sprawling model is made out of about 22,000 bricks, rendering Mount Rushmore – and the four Presidential faces carved on it – down to some sharp detail, including the rubble pile underneath.

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And that’s only on one side of the whole build. The rest is given over to a recreation of the forested terrain and the rest of the Mount Rushmore National Memorial complex: visitor’s center, Lincoln Borglum Museum and Presidential Trail.

According to WRAL.com Buttliere took around 400 hours to finalize the design of his LEGO Mount Rushmore model, and that the actual construction took him 150 hours more. That’s par for the course for Buttliere, a well-known LEGO builder with international awards and exhibits of his work.

The BrickUniverse LEGO Con kicks off at the Raleigh Convention Center from March 9 to 10, 9AM-5PM. Highlights will include the usual free-building areas, meet and greets with popular builders, a Challenge competition Zone and a “Star Wars” set display.

Local Owners Ponder Sale of LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort

Through the UK theme park operating company Merlin Entertainments, LEGO lends its name to the various LEGOLAND Resorts all over the world. With eight already open and no less than three more under construction, LEGOLAND is steeping up to be a major international theme park chain. LEGO fans and their families enjoy these resorts greatly.

In Asia, two LEGOLAND parks can be found. One of them is LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort in Iskandar Puteri, Johor District. The original theme park complex opened in 2012, followed by LEGOLAND Water Park in 2016. It boasts being the first LEGOLAND to feature the company’s virtual reality roller coaster attraction.

But for all its hype, LEGOLAND Malaysia hasn’t been getting a lot of visiting guests especially in 2018. According to Bloomberg the park’s Malaysian owner, the state-owned sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional, has begun considering options for selling the resort.

Finance insiders shared with Bloomberg that Khazanah is waiting for suitable offers before committing to an announcement of the sale. This was revealed through a recent Kuala Lumpur press conference with the sovereign wealth fund’s managing director Shahril Ridza Ridzuan. No final decision on the matter has been made although interested buyers are already welcome to initiate talks with Khazanah.

If a deal to sell is made soon, the current valuation of LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort is 1 billion Malaysian ringgits ($245 million). This includes the theme park’s debts, exacerbated by low visitor counts last year.

For travelers planning to go to Malaysia (or Singapore, which is closer to Johor than Kuala Lumpur), they can check out booking options for the LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort, LEGOLAND Water Park and the LEGOLAND Hotel at their official website here.

LEGOLAND Windsor Season Reopening to Feature “LEGO Movie 2” Experience with Apocalypseburg Replica Display

LEGOLAND Windsor Resort in the UK has been closed to guests for its seasonal break over the past several weeks. However, it will soon be opening its doors again in the middle of March. The staff is looking forward to a surge of visitors who may have been inspired to drop by because of the recently released “LEGO Movie 2.”

And what a treat LEGOLAND Windsor will have in store for them at the start of the new season! On their official website they have announced that they will be offering a “LEGO Movie 2” experience in line with their special “LEGO Movie Days” event during the latter half of March after their post-break reopening.

One major attraction during this period will be a brick-perfect recreation of the locations from “LEGO Movie 2.” As spoiled in the first film, the 3D-animated setting of Bricksburg/Apocalypseburg is actually a real-world LEGO diorama worked on by a family portrayed by several real actors. Therefore, LEGOLAND Windsor guests will be treated to accurate replicas of Apocalypseburg and its environs, done in the same exact scale as how the real-world movie characters might view it.

The Apocalypseburg diorama was realized by LEGOLAND Windsor model-makers with input from Warner Bros. Consumer Products and “LEGO Movie 2” set designers to get every detail right. The whole setup boasts being made up of 62,254 individual LEGO pieces in 31 colors and 628 shapes.

While guests ooh and ah at the display, LEGOLAND Windsor will also have minifigure mascots of Emmet, Wyldstyle and Sweet Mayhem ready for meet and greets. The Miniland area will host a scavenger hunt event; a “LEGO Movie” mosaic build will also be open for participant builders to help complete the project. It’s shaping up to be plenty of fun weekends at LEGOLAND Windsor Resort.

The LEGO Movie 2 experience, which has already opened in other LEGOLAND resorts such as California, will be around throughout this new season in Windsor. LEGO Movie Days in the meantime will take place across the third, fourth and fifth weekends of March (16-17, 23-24 and 30-31) in LEGOLAND Windsor.

LEGO fans in the UK and tourists travelling there by next month can book their theme park tickets and hotel stays at their official website here.

 

LEGOLAND Resorts Expect Greater Ticket Sales Due to “LEGO Movie 2” and Opening of LEGO Movie World in Florida

For LEGO fans, the various LEGOLAND Resort theme parks are already places where everything is great. But in LEGOLAND Florida in particular, it’ll soon be getting an expansion section where, like the movies it is based on, “Everything is Awesome.”

Just to remind everyone, the LEGO Movie World area in LEGOLAND Florida is opening next month on March 27, as revealed by their sneak peek announcement last January. Fans will get to explore and have fun on this park section, based on the “LEGO Movie” city of Bricksburg, where they can go on new rides and eat at new restaurants.

While the expansion is only for the Florida resort, all LEGOLAND theme parks are expecting to be making awesome business at this part of the year. As Merlin Entertainments puts it, they certainly have “The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part” helping to drive ticket sales for all their resorts.

For instance, while LEGOLAND Windsor in the UK has no LEGO Movie World yet, they’ve still got a grand event planned that ties in to the “LEGO Movie” sequel that premiered early this February. LEGO Movie Days will run for two-day periods over three weeks of March in LEGOLAND Windsor.

Back to LEGOLAND Florida, aside from the aforementioned LEGO Movie World itself, the Resort Hotel will also have several of its rooms re-themed after the films, with decorated walls and amenities like a Unikitty shower.

All in all, Merlin Entertainments looks to report strong profits of £271 million (before taxation) when the theme park company makes its latest full-year financial report this Thursday, February 28. And part of it is thanks to the ticket sale boost from “LEGO Movie 2.”

First Official LEGO Minifigure Factory Launched in Leicester Square LEGO Store

When LEGO fans first saw the special set Minifigure Factory (5005356), made to commemorate 40 years of the LEGO minifigure, some might have wondered if “making” one’s own official minifigures as shown here was possible. LEGO answered that question when it began tests of an actual Minifigure Factory, a custom printing service in the vein of their earlier Mosaic Maker.

Over eight months have passed since the LEGO Minifigure Factory was first tested in Copenhagen, Denmark, the home nation of The LEGO Group. Following this intensive trail period, the Minifigure Factory will be made available for the first time in a commercial capacity, in London’s primary LEGO Store: Leicester Square.

As Promo Bricks tells us, the LEGO branded store at Leicester Square shall be the first in the world with a Minifigure Factory for making custom minifigs. This is another “first” honor for that particular retail location, which has seen set unveilings and other events in the past. They also got the first LEGO Mosaic Maker system in the world.

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How does the commercial version of the LEGO Minifigure Factory work? First a customer of the Leicester Square LEGO Store must buy a £10.99 Minifigure Factory Pack. This pack is canned at the Factory machine, along with the customer’s name entry, to open a minifigure design interface. They get to choose figure parts to assemble then do a custom design on the torso (only the torso for now). Lastly, they select their custom minifig’s other accessories while it’s being printed.

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All in all, the LEGO Minifigure Factory looks to be a popular service for the more discerning LEGO fans with extra cash to spend; after all, almost £11 for a single minifigure does sound steep even if the buyer got to customize and accessorize it. Time will tell when another Minifigure Factory unit is announced, and where in the world it might be located next.

Munich Trade Show Features Massive 1:1 LEGO Volkswagen T2 Van Made by Certified Professional

Full-scale LEGO reproductions are a dime a dozen these days, particularly when it comes to automobiles. We’ve seen brick-built Formula One racing cars and camper trailers, and for the umpteenth time we’ll mention the storied 1:1 scale LEGO Bugatti Chiron that drives like a real car, powered by LEGO-set generators.

Now, a trade show in Munich, Germany will serve as a venue for the showcase of another life-sized LEGO vehicle construct. The project was built by LEGO Certified Professional Rene Hoffmeister with help from Pascal Lenhard, and their replicated vehicle, as befits the German setting, is the Volkswagen T2 camper.

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Originating from a digital schematic of a real Type 2 van that was converted into a LEGO brick diagram, Hoffmeister and Lenhard led a building team to realize the plan, constructing some 400,000 different LEGO pieces over and around a supporting metal framework for strength.

One hiccup in the project occurred when the delivery of 20,000 transparent LEGO blocks to be formed into the Volkswagen’s windshield and windows was delayed. By having his team do overtime and weekend shifts, Hoffmeister managed to keep their construction timetable to within the six weeks allotted before the f.re.e. outdoor trade show officially opened this Wednesday on February 20.

For trivia purposes, the physical stats of this LEGO 1:1 Volkswagen Type 2 van are: 700 kilos (1,543 lbs.) 400,000 blocks (20,000 transparent), 5 meters (16.4 ft.) long, 3 meters (9.8 ft.) tall, with functional sliding door and Westfalia roof.

This incredible LEGO Volkswagen T2 will be a star attraction at the f.re.e. trade show in Munich, which runs for four days from February 20 to 24. It’ll be located in hall C5, booth 103, along with the actual T2 that it was modeled from.

Art Teacher Whose LEGO Star Wars Set Collection at Her School Got Vandalized, Now Has Her Exhibits Nearly Restored

Art instructor Jeanna Bassett from Concordia Elementary School in San Clemente, Orange County might fit the bill for cool teacher. She had amassed three decades’ worth of LEGO Star Wars sets, many of which were assembled by her sons. In a generous gesture she had donated some sets to her school’s library as exhibits over the years, becoming its own little attraction there.

Then on November last year she experienced a LEGO collector’s worst nightmare: vandalism of the sets on display. The destruction was so significant that Basset lost all hope of seeing her collection put together again. Thank goodness for her local building community, not to mention LEGO itself.

As told by the Orange County Register, over two months since Jeanna Bassett’s LEGO Star Wars set exhibit in the Concordia School in San Clemente was wrecked by still-unidentified suspects, some 90% of the total collection that had been on display has since been either repaired or given newly-built replacements.

With 125 individual LEGO Star Wars sets that were damaged in last year’s vandalism attack on Concordia, repair and replacement of them would have been too daunting. But the local community readily answered the call. Orange County’s Goodwill actually sprung for the fixit job on one of Bassett’s biggest ruined LEGO Star Wars sets, the UCS Millennium Falcon (75192) itself, which they then presented to her at school last December.

Other salvage work on the collection was performed by various LEGO Users Groups from Orange, Los Angeles and San Diego Counties, totaling 40 individual builders that joined hands to restore Bassett’s precious Star Wars sets.

Paul Lee of the LA LEGO User Group put it best for his fellows when he remarked, “To paraphrase Liam Neeson, as AFOLS we ‘do have a very particular set of skills’ that were perfectly suited for solving this problem. We have the building experience and expertise, and we have the resources in terms of replacing damaged or missing pieces.”

The LEGO Group itself also donated more Star Wars sets for assembly worth $2,000. Lastly, “The Last Jedi” director Rian Johnson presented Jeanna Bassett with a signed “Star Wars” poster to go with her mostly-restored library exhibit, as he himself lives in San Clemente and has nephews attending in Concordia.

While she and her husband Donald were reinstalling her LEGO collection in the library Sunday, February 10, Bassett said of her fortune, “It’s really the story of how the community came together. It’s sad it had to happen in the first place but it shows you people really do care.”

The LEGO Movie World Coming to LEGOLAND Florida Resort

LEGOLAND Florida Resort is adding another attraction that will make everything in the theme park more awesome. It will be dedicating a significant portion of the park to what is call as The LEGO Movie World, featuring new attractions based on the first LEGO Movie and its sequel, the LEGO Movie 2.  Furthermore, the wait will not be that long since Merlin Entertainment Group has announced a March 27 opening just roughly two months from now.

Read on for the official press release of the opening of the LEGO Movie World, followed by a video announcement from Merlin Entertainment courtesy of BricksFanz.

The LEGO Movie 2 is set to open in theaters next week, February 8, 2019. Just be sure not to get caught with the LSS-inducing effects of its Catchy Song.

WINTER HAVEN, Fla, Jan. 25, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Opening March 27, LEGOLAND Florida Resort is taking guests from the theater to the theme park with the launch of THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD. Created in partnership with Warner Bros. Consumer Products, this impressive expansion features three new rides and numerous attractions, all inspired by the characters and themes of the worldwide blockbuster THE LEGO MOVIE™ and the exciting new big-screen animated adventure sequel THE LEGO MOVIE™ 2: The Second Part.

The creative masterminds from Merlin Magic Making, the global creative and delivery division of parent company Merlin Entertainments Group, re-created Bricksburg with its lovable characters, creative eating spaces and authentic city scape where guests can experience Emmet’s Super Suite.

“THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD is our largest addition to date and will provide guests around the world with the ultimate movie-to-theme park experience,” said Keith Carr, project director of Merlin Magic Making. “The park just screams fun everywhere you look; kids and families alike can interact with various characters, enjoy ride technology that’s the first of its kind and dine on tasty tacos at Taco Tuesday Everyday. Not to mention, we have a spaceship playground!”

While the Park’s theming and immersion of THE LEGO MOVIE universe will captivate guests of all ages, the three brand-new rides stay true to LEGOLAND Florida’s kid-friendly experience.

“The rides truly capture the whimsical fun and quirky nature of the popular LEGO movies,” said Rex Jackson, general manager of LEGOLAND Florida. “The Masters of Flight ride will be iconic to our park, Unikitty’s ride sings and spins with her ever-changing emotions and the Battle of Bricksburg is themed around huge LEGO DUPLO® aliens. With great partners in Warner Bros. we’ve developed a park that will bring a lot of smiles to children and their families. We’re thrilled to be the only location for fans to experience THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD.”

THE LEGO MOVIE Masters of Flight takes guests on a suspended ride aboard Emmet’s Triple Decker Couch surrounded by a full-dome virtual screen, giving the sensational feeling of flying through a world created completely from LEGO® bricks. The attraction is the first in the world at a major theme park that embeds a 180-degree turn in the ride experience. The ride animation will feature a humorous and magical adventure as guests soar through Cloud Cuckoo Land, dive to Middle Zealand and splash down on the waters of Pirate’s Cove.

Unikitty’s Disco Drop takes guests through a rainbow-filled journey based on Unikitty and her many moods. Once on the ride, guests will swoop to the tiptop of Cloud Cuckoo Land, then drop, spin and bounce back down to earth, creating a thrilling and frenzied experience.

At Battle of Bricksburg, the only water ride in THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD, riders are challenged to stop DUPLO aliens from invading and stealing LEGO bricks by spraying water at targets from their boats. The riders aren’t the only ones who can enjoy playing in the water, outside of the ride will be water cannons for guests to spray and help the riders save the day.

THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD will also feature Taco Tuesday Everyday eatery, The Awesome Shop, filled with take-home collectables and a space-themed playground structure inspired by Benny’s spaceship which will include special photo opportunities and character interactions.

To continue the fun, guests can enjoy the ultimate vacation (or slumber party) just steps away at LEGOLAND® Hotel in the new THE LEGO MOVIE themed rooms. Designed with familiar scenery and beloved characters from the movie, no detail is left untouched. Adults can relax in their own room inspired by Emmet’s apartment, while kids dream of spaceship adventures in a separate children’s room themed after Benny’s Spaceship.

No matter where you stay or how you choose to spend your adventure, awesome awaits at THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD!

Buy your tickets now and be among the first to experience THE LEGO MOVIE WORLD www.LEGOLAND.com/annual-pass/.