LEGO Pop-Up Stores To Be Introduced in the US Starting This Year

The LEGO Group has announced a new retail concept store to hit US stores this year. Dubbed as LEGO Pop-Up Stores, this initiative will offer a new different shopping experience as compared to that of LEGO Brand Stores. In fact, the very first Pop-Up Store already went live last Friday in Manchester, Connecticut. According to the LEGO Ambassador Network, the LEGO Pop-Up Stores is an experimental marketing approach that allows LEGO fans who does not have access to any local LEGO Brand Stores to experience the same, though there are notable differences. So, how are they different? According to the blog post:

Whats the difference between a Pop-Up store and a typical LEGO Brand store?

  • Yes, you will be able to earn and redeem LEGO VIP points at Pop-Up stores.
  • There is nota Pick-a-Brick wall or Build-a-Mini station.
  • There are noLEGO Brand store Passport stamps available at Pop-Up stores.
  • There will notbe monthly minibuild activities or other in store events.
  • The product prices will bethe same at LEGO Brand and Pop-Up stores including any sales.
  • Pop-Up stores will tryto offer the same gift with purchase promotions.
  • Pop-Up stores will have new employeesbut also at least one experienced employee from a local LEGO Brand store.

Though these differences may seem easy to overlook and the initiative is of having a sort of “make-shift” LEGO Store is a welcomed gesture from the LEGO, I hope that they will find a way to offer the same gift with purchase (GWP) sets in all Pop-Up Stores as well.

Furthermore, since this project is still in its experimental stages, each of the six LEGO Pop-Up Stores to be opened across the US will be transient, operating only in a few weeks. A sign outside the store will remind customers and LEGO fans how many days are left until the LEGO Pop-Up Store wraps it up.

So what do you think of the concept behind the LEGO Pop-Up Store? Do you think it will take off? What other things or activities do you want to see in the store to make it more appealing? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

 

Brickset and Fairy Bricks’ Bikes to Billund Charity Ride Starts Friday

Back in August, a team of four was assembled by LEGO-donating charitable organization Fairy Bricks to undertake a grueling journey for the sake of fundraising. Their goal is to journey from London to LEGO House in Denmark covering the land journey by bicycle: the Bikes to Billund charity cycle ride.

That time has come at last. This Friday, September 21, the Bikes to Billund Team has begun their trip from the Leicester Square LEGO Store in London, to Harwich and their ferry towards Rotterdam, and finally their main cycling leg through the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark to arrive in Billund.

Already the trip is proving to be a genuine endurance challenge, considering that European windstorm Ali has just passed through the UK on Wednesday and Thursday. But the cycling team were determined to start their ride on schedule, so we wish them best of luck.

Meanwhile, the fundraising campaign portion of Bikes to Billund seems to be proceeding smoothly; the sponsorships pledged so far helped Fairy Bricks to raise over £6,000 in donations as of this writing. While the donation drive will last until December, everyone who donated before the time the bike team arrives in Billund will be part of a raffle, with several winners who will receive customized MOC models of the Fairy Bricks charity van, called “Daenerys”.

42095888_1819048094810209_4496120113623203840_o

For those interested in keeping tabs of the Bikes to Billund team on their way to LEGO House, you can watch their progress on our fellow LEGO news source and online set guide Brickset, via their official Facebook and Twitter.

Submission Period for Bricklink’s LEGO AFOL Designer Program Has Begun

This early September, third-party LEGO-selling platform Bricklink dropped a bombshell when they announced a new crowd-funding initiative in major partnership with LEGO itself. This was the AFOL Designer Program, which aims to showcase AFOL-submitted MOCs which can be supported and crowd-funded into limited-release box set with revenues to the creators.

Bricklink has already laid down specific details about the AFOL Designer Program, which comes off as an alternative to LEGO Ideas, but which will have the resulting sets be limited-edition only for the 60th anniversary celebration of the LEGO brick. Oh, and they also gave a date for when entries will begin to be accepted for the program: right now.

That’s right, Bricklink is now ready to accept MOC designs from AFOLs aspiring to have their builds be included in this limited-time wave of LEGO sets that will be coming out next year. The start date was September 18 and will last until November 18, after which they will be evaluated under the supervision of “a celebrated LEGO designer with unique expertise and a historical understanding of the LEGO system”.

All AFOL MOCs that make the cut for Bricklink’s Designer Program will then be out forth for crowdfunding throughout the month of February. They will then be put on a limited production run in time for release in April 2019. When total sales revenues arrive in the future, the lucky AFOLs will receive 10 percent of it, no questions asked.

Unlike the LEGO Ideas path, these limited sets that will be born out of the program will not be official releases, though they will likely be comprised of authentic LEGO pieces. Still, for the time they’ll be available, these uncommon sets from AFOLs’ dreams will be a true part of the ongoing grand global celebration for 60 years of LEGO.

Free LEGO Scarecrow Witch (40285) for VIP Members in October

There many good reasons for dedicated LEGO fans who shop for their sets straight from LEGO to get into their VIP loyalty program. From getting points towards rewards, exclusive early access to sought-after upcoming sets, and more besides, what’s not to like? LEGO VIP opens up a lot of possibilities. Another perk of the VIP program was the privilege to join in on annual Monthly Mini Build events that are held at certain days of each month in all LEGO Stores. As detailed in the October Store Calendar, the mini build for next month is the LEGO Scarecrow Witch (40285) set .

For two days, October 2 and 3, LEGO Stores will host the Mini Build Event for those interested in getting their own Scarecrow Witch (40285). But first, they must be members of LEGO VIP, and then they need to sign up for a slot during the event. Each day’s hosting only has 120 maximum participants, making 240 in two days.

A LEGO VIP household can register up to four children at once for the Mini Build, and each will receive a set. But as the participatory requirement states, for a child to bring his Scarecrow Witch (40285) home, he must build the set during the event by his own hand.

Registration for LEGO VIPs who want in on the October LEGO Store Mini Build event started last September 15, so it’ll be a race against time for one of those 120 slots in a day. Some LEGO Stores will have their event happen on October 9 and 10 instead, so would-be participants can check availability on the registration form itself.

Second LEGOLAND China Theme Park and Resort to Open in 2022

It’s no secret that The LEGO Group has been investing quite a lot lately in Asia: from opening the world’s largest LEGO Flagship Store in the heart of Shanghai, to their exciting partnership with online gaming platform Tencent Games, LEGO is now expanding its horizons in the Chinese region by planning out the details of its second LEGOLAND China theme park in the next four years.

LEGOLAND Florida’s The Great LEGO Race. 

Soon to be located in Sanya in the Island of Hainan, this second LEGOLAND China theme park will be the 5th LEGOLAND located in Asia after those from Malaysia, Japan, South Korea, and Shanghai, China. Construction for LEGOLAND Hainan will begin in 2020 and once finished, will offer a one-of-a-kind LEGO experience for the entire family. LEGOLAND Hainan is also expected to take advantage of the booming tourism in the region considering that the island takes pride for its beautiful beach front and scenery. Here’s a rough Google translation of the official press release originally published in Chinese.

“On the afternoon of September 6, Hainan Provincial Governor Shen Xiaoming, Sanya Municipal Party Committee Secretary Yan Chaojun, Sanya Mayor A Dong, Chinese Media Group Chairman and CEO Li Ruigang, Vice President Xie Li, and Merlin Group Asia Project General Manager Ray Dubowa, in the Beijing Hotel on the cooperation and landing of the “LEGOLAND” project in Sanya, launched a tripartite dialogue and exchange.

According to the agreement, Chinese Culture and the Merlin Group will jointly develop a large outdoor family entertainment theme park, LEGOLAND, in Sanya. The two sides will combine the theme elements of LEGO bricks and the tropical atmosphere of Sanya to create a world-class integrated tourist resort featuring water parks. For families of children ageds 2-12, the park offers a variety of fun entertainment experiences and interactive puzzle activities that allow each child to create their own world in play. Among them, the mini-city built by thousands of LEGO bricks not only reflects the Chinese elements and Sanya scenery, but also is a wonderful stage to stimulate children’s imagination and wisdom. LEGOLAND Sanya Resort has an immersive parent-child interaction experience to create a family holiday destination based in China and radiating Southeast Asia.”

The LEGOLAND Water Park in LEGOLAND Malaysia.

The Chinese Cultural Group and Merlin Entertainments Group are two of the world’s largest theme park and family entertainment development companies. Merlin Entertainments is second only to Disney as a live entertainment company, and is responsible for the establishment of other LEGOLAND theme parks and LEGOLAND Discovery Centers in various parts of the globe.

Image credit for the featured image above: The Forbidden City and Great Wall of China as seen in LEGOLAND Malaysia

Singapore and the Rest of South East Asia Are Gearing up for LEGO Bricktober 2018

After almost a month since the reveal of the annual Bricktober minifigures and its confirmed availability in US LEGO Stores and Barnes and Noble locations, the rest of the world, particularly in South East Asia, are now getting ready for the Toys R Us LEGO Bricktober 2018 hype. Unlike in the US and Europe, several TRU stores in Asia are still operational and business as usual. In the Philippines for example, the local Toys R Us management has confirmed via email that the LEGO Bricktober 2018 will be available anytime soon. Additionally, Toys R Us Singapore has now rolled-out the exact dates on when these sought after minifigures will be available in the region. According to TRU Singapore’s official Facebook page, from September 28 to October 26 visitors can have these collectibles as gift-with-purchase sets for a minimum purchase of any LEGO products worth $70 SGD or more.

For your reference, and if you happen to know someone who is in Singapore or will be there during the next few weeks, be sure to mark these dates on your calendars and visit any of the nine (9) TRU Singapore stores located in the area.

LEGO Ninjago Minifigure Pack (5005257) – availability: September 28 to October 4

Includes: Harumi (with Oni Mask of Hatred), Future Jay, Mohawk, and Nya (in Kabuki disguise).

 

LEGO Harry Potter Minifigure Pack (5005254) – availability: October 5 to 11

Includes: Rolanda Hooch, Prof. Horace Slughorn, Madam Undersecretary Professor Dolores Umbridge, and Prof. Severus Snape as transformed by a Boggart.

 

LEGO Jurassic World Minifigure Pack (5005255) – availability: October 12 to 18

Includes: Dr. Ian Malcolm (played by Jeff Goldblum), Claire Dearing, Owen Grady, and Baby Blue with chicken leg piece.

 

LEGO Marvel Superheroes Minifigure Pack (5005256) – availability: October 19 to 26 

Includes: War Machine, Wong, Tony Stark (with sweater) Bucky as White Wolf.

 

Will keep you posted as more information comes in so be sure to subscribe to our news feed and watch for our notifications. Special thanks to Candid Bricks for the heads up.

LEGOLAND Windsor Announces Brick or Treat Halloween Events

Last week, the US LEGOLAND theme park resorts and Discovery Centers began announcing their respective schedules for Brick or Treat, their annual afternoon-evening Halloween events extravaganza for October and November (with some starting late September too). Now, other LEGOLAND locations are reporting their schedules, such as Windsor in the UK.

Every LEGOLAND park has several activities and shows in common during Brick or Treat, and it’s the unique ones to every location that makes each celebration stand out. For LEGOLAND Windsor, one of them is the refurbishing of one of their oldest ride attractions, Hill Train, into the Haunted Hill Train that will take its passengers through the Enchanted Forest.

The Forest itself will serve as a venue for more Halloween-themed fun, with booths for building LEGO pumpkins, brick mosaics and good old coloring activities for the young ones. There’s also a Brick or Treat Trail mystery-style treasure hunt that sends its participants around the park searching for missing potion ingredients and a chance to win a special Halloween prize.

But if that’s too much walking for you, then why not hang out at Frankie’s Monster Disco? It’s only for the Brick or Treat period at the Miniland area, where guests can boogeyman-boogie with their hosts Frankie, Orange Brick and Lord Vampyre. Halloween costume contests will be going on too.

For LEGOLAND Windsor guests staying at the Hotel, they’ll have their own unique experience with Ollie’s Campfire Stories. Lots of food and drinks get Halloween makeovers as well. Now’s no better time to go to LEGOLAND Windsor Resort and get your pants scared off in a totally fun way. Check out their official website for more details and ticket booking.

Life-Sized LEGO Technic Bugatti Chiron To Go On a European Tour

Last month, LEGO was able to prove the impossible when it unveiled its fully drivable  and life-sized LEGO Technic Bugatti Chiron during the kick-off of the Grand Prix Formula 1 racing tournament in Monza, Italy last August 30. Powered by 2,304 LEGO Power Function motors, this fully functional LEGO vehicle patterned from its smaller counterpart, the LEGO Technic Bugatti Chiron (42083), managed to churn out a max speed of 20 km/h. Though this seemingly impossible MOC is still a far cry in terms of speed as compared to the 420 km/h top speed of its original predecessor, the brilliant engineering that went through in creating this brick masterpiece is simply amazing.

this MOC. According to Promobricks, this life-sized LEGO Technic Bugatti Chiron will go on a European Tour, which already started in Milan, Italy. It will make the following road stops at these locations.

  • Dusseldorf, Germany (Schadowplatz) – September 20-23
  • Munich Airport, Germany – September 28 & 29
  • Paris, France (Motor Show) – September 30 to October 14
  • Utrecht, Netherlands (LEGO World) – October 18 to October 24
  • Great Britain (exact place to be announced) – October 30 to November 11
  • Wolfsburg, Germany (Autostadt) – November 11 to December 12

There is no exact location yet where in the UK will this LEGO engineering wonder will make a stop, and I’ll keep you posted once new information comes by. I hope this build will eventually find its way to the US and the rest of the world – it serves as a reminder that with LEGO bricks, building for real, even what seems to be the impossible, can be a reality. For now, check out these images shared by Promobricks. Special thanks also to Francesco Frangioja for snapping these images.

 

LEGOLAND Brick-or-Treat Party Nights Are Coming Back this Halloween

It’s never too early to plan for a party, and what bigger party for everybody can there be at the end of next month, except for Halloween? We can bet that theme parks across the country have got their own spooky celebration events planned, including the various LEGOLAND theme parks of course. The LEGOLAND yearly Halloween extravaganza is called Brick-or-Treat Party Nights, and guests of the LEGOLAND parks and Discovery Centers across the US can be assured that they’ll be having an awesome monster bash wherever they may be. Each location has its own dates for Brick-or-Treat, so let’s go over these.

brick-or-treat

First we have LEGOLAND California Resort. They’re having Brick-or-Treat Party Nights as early as September 29, and so on every consecutive Saturday until October 27. LEGOLAND Florida Resort is starting late, but with more dates on schedule including on October 31st itself (though with limited activities and no fireworks display). Their Party Nights will happen in all weekends of October.

True to expectations, the LEGOLAND Brick-or-Treat Celebrations will start at around 5 PM on all selected dates, featuring attractions running from flashy colorful costumes to creepy (yet still kid-friendly) scares. In California, they’ll have a new “Dr. Frankenbrick’s Lab” show that invites its kiddie audience to participate in the Doc’s experiments to animate a slime, with fun science lessons extra.

Other exciting things to look out for are the Meet and Greets, the costume contests, build-and-craft sessions with the LEGO Friends at Heartlake City, and all the yummy candy for sale at treat stations everywhere.

You may book your tickets at the LEGOLAND parks’ respective websites; California even has “Early Bat” limited-time offers in store. Each LEGOLAND Discovery Center in North America has their own Brick-or-Treat days so you can check them for yourself here. Look under “News and Events”.

UK’s LEGO Store Milton Keynes Closes for a 1-Month Refurbishment

While LEGO products have long been available for customers at general and toy-oriented retail chains around the world, the idea of a branded LEGO Store is a fairly recent concept. The first one opened in Cologne, Germany back in 2002, followed by the LEGO Store Milton Keynes in the UK in 2008.

Since the opening of UK’s first LEGO Store a decade ago, there have been lots of LEGO Stores in the United Kingdom, some of which like in London’s Leicester Square have risen in prominence over Milton Keynes. But the first and original LEGO Store Milton Keynes still draws a sense of nostalgia over fans, and as such will be slated for a much needed makeover. That explains the month-long closure of the LEGO Store there.

One other reason for the refurbishment of the LEGO Store Milton Keynes was to bring it up to date with the now-consistent style of all branded LEGO Stores across the globe. The store’s Facebook Events page assures customers that they’ll reopen October 4.

Needless to say perhaps, but The LEGO Group will have a grand reopening event for the LEGO Store Milton Keynes that will run from October 4, a Thursday, all the way to the weekend culminating on Sunday, October 7. And they’ve got freebies waiting for returning customers all those four days.

Until October 7, each first 100 customers of every day that spends at least £15 in LEGO will get a free goody bag. In addition, customers spending a minimum £125 will get a free exclusive LEGO Brand Store (40145) set which first appeared as a LEGO Brand Store opening gift-with-purchase (GWP) set back in 2014. To be exact, there was also a similar GWP set that were released earlier in 2012, with the LEGO Brand Retail Store (3300003). However, it is most likely that most the recent model will be given away once the LEGO Store Milton Keynes opens again, since the LEGO Brand Store (40145) reflects the design elements of later LEGO Stores.