Bricks by the Bay is a convention for LEGO hobbyists, artists, fans, and enthusiasts. If you have been to other conventions such as BrickCon (Seattle), BrickFair (Virginia/Alabama/New England), BrickWorld (Chicago), Bricks Cascade (Portland), etc. you are already familiar with the basic format. We gather in a large hotel ballroom to display our models and participate in a variety of games, presentations, and activities. There is a public show on the last day where everyone can come and see all the exhibits. (Unlike most conventions, we only have one public day at Bricks by the Bay.)
On Friday & Saturday we have various events (break-out sessions) such as presentations, roundtable discussions, games, etc. from 9am to 6pm, a break for dinner, and an evening program with prizes, speeches, etc. followed by more games and contests.
For adult attendees we will have a no host bar on Saturday night (August 10th), immediately following the award ceremony and continuing until Last Call at 1:30am, closing at 2am. Attendees are strongly encouraged to stay at the hotel especially if you are planning to drink, or at least have a designated driver.
On Sunday, we will be open to the public from 10am-4pm for them to see our exhibits and visit the vendors, then close the convention and go home.
The first Bricks by the Bay event was held at the Fremont Mariott in April of 2010, and the attendance on our public day overwhelmed the resources of the hotel. Although we loved working with the hotel staff we had to move to a larger venue. In March 2011 we had our first event at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara, using 75% of their Grand Ballroom for exhibits and vendors, and the remaining 25% for presentations and activities on Friday and Saturday. We also shared the hotel that year with the Nova Albion Steampunk Convention, and attendees of both events had a great time visiting one another’s exhibits and vendors. Our 2012 event was bigger than ever, featuring over 400 registered attendees, using the entire 22,500 square foot Grand Ballroom with exhibits and vendors, and for the first time also utilizing space from the adjacent Convention Center (upstairs) for our breakout sessions and evening ceremonies.
In 2013 we move to the summer (August) and continue with the same facilities, using more of the Convention Center space for presentations and activities, and increasing the maximum attendance to 500 participants. We are looking forward to having the best event yet!
- Friday August 9, 2013 (7am-midnight) convention (evening: opening ceremony)
- Saturday August 10, 2013 (7am-midnight) convention (evening: awards ceremony; no host bar)
- Sunday August 11, 2013 (7am-8pm) convention (public hours 10am-4pm, closing ceremony, then teardown)
Hotel guests save $ 20.00 off on their convention registration! Discount applies to one badge per room. If you’re staying at the hotel, be sure to reserve your room first and then complete your registration, since you’ll need to give us your confirmation number to get your discount. Go to the Hyatt Reservations page to start the registration process, or call Hyatt Reservations at 1-888-421-1442 and ask for “Bricks by the Bay” group rate. Note: do not call the Santa Clara hotel directly; reservations must go through the national reservations desk.
Event Attendee and Vendor registration for the 2013 event are open! Use our registration system to get your badges and/or vendor space.
- If you’re bringing anything to display, submit your MOC (My Own Creation) details through the registration site (not yet open).
- If you want to volunteer to help behind the scenes, subscribe to our planning mailing list (see Mailing Lists page).
- If you wish to be a vendor, first register for the convention, and then fill out out Vendor Registration form (everyone working your booth must be a registered attendee).
The Bricks by the Bay convention is a 3-day event running from Friday through Sunday. Convention attendees have the opportunity to meet people in the flesh whom they’ve only seen online, or see models in person that they have seen pictures of online. There are a number of talks, discussions, games, contests, and other activities throughout Friday and Saturday for attendees, as well as a large exhibit hall where they can display their LEGO models for one another and for the public day on Sunday.
Registration for the convention includes a number of goodies:
- Printed LEGO brick badge with your name, city, and affiliation(s). *
- Special room rate at the hotel with free Wi-Fi in your room and lobby, and $20 discount on one convention registration.
- A printed program, listing schedule of events and information about events.
- Goodies donated by our sponsors. **
- Opportunities to win door prizes and contests.
- Display space in the exhibit hall for your models.
- Access to all convention activities throughout the three days.
- Access to buy from vendors on Friday and Saturday as well as during public hours on Sunday.
* Late registrants may receive badges with their names printed using a label maker, if there isn’t time to get them printed.
** Subject to sponsors’ generosity.
So if you are a serious LEGO hobbyist or artist, please register for the full convention. There is no age limit, but those under 18 are required to have an adult also registered, and those under 16 must be accompanied by that adult at all times. While the focus of LEGO conventions is on Adult Fans of LEGO (AFOLs) we don’t want to prevent precocious teens or kids from participating as long as it is done responsibly.
If your interest is in seeing the exhibits on display and buying from the vendors, you may want to just come for the public day on Sunday, however. If you are coming for the sake of your kids, it’s up to you whether you want to invest in a 3-day weekend of full LEGO immersion, or just come for a few hours and see what people have built.
Note: In the past a discount at the local LEGO stores has been offered, but as of January 2013 the LEGO company has discontinued that program, sadly.