Other LEGO Conventions
Adult fans of LEGO (AFOLs) have been organizing conventions for over ten years now. Here’s a brief history of these unique events:
North American LEGO Conventions
BrickCon – Seattle, WA
Seattle was the second city to get a LEGO convention and BrickCon is the oldest continuously-running fan event today. It started as a LEGO exhibition (not a convention) by 25 adult LEGO hobbyists in 2002 and became a full convention in 2003. It has grown ever since, filling a large 40,000 square foot exhibition hall at Seattle Center. It is held every year in the first weekend in October. Until 2007 it was known as “Northwest BrickCon” or “NWBrickCon.”
Brickworld – Chicago, IL
Brickworld started in 2006 and has grown to be the largest of the LEGO conventions. Held in June of every year, it draws participants from all over the midwest, including several large LEGO Train Club displays. Brickworld also sponsors annual shows in Fort Wayne, Lafayette, and Indianapolis, Indiana.
BrickFair – Washington, DC; Birmingham, AL; and Manchester, NH
Picking up where BrickFest left off, BrickFair is held every year in the Washington, DC area in August. They started in the Sheraton in Tysons Corner where BrickFest 2006 was held, but outgrew that facility and now have the event at Dulles Expo Center in Northern Virginia. Starting in 2012, there will also be a BrickFair in Birmingham, AL, and in 2013 they are adding a New England show in Manchester, NH.
BrickMagic, Raleigh, NC
The newest LEGO convention is run by Brick Journal magazine editor and founder Joe Meno, who ran the 2006 BrickFest. It is held in May of each year in Raleigh.
BrickFiesta is held in a different Texan city every year over the Independence Day weekend in July.
Bricks Cascade, Portland, OR
Bricks Cascade is held every year in Portland. They began in June 2012, and switched to March in 2013 when Bricks by the Bay moved to August.
Brickfête, Toronto, Canada
Held every July in Toronto, Brickfête is the Canadian convention.
Conventions outside the United States
Besides the above American events, LEGO conventions and large expos have been held in various countries in Europe, as well as Australia and Hong Kong. Bricks by the Bay is proud to join this global phenomenon.
There are a couple of conventions which have taken place in the past but are no longer held:
BrickFest, Washington, DC & Portland, OR
The first BrickFest, and the first LEGO convention anywhere, was held in 2000 at George Mason University near Washington, DC. It drew 60 people, had a large castle display, and piles of bricks on the floor from which to build. It continued at GMU every year through 2005. In the meantime, BrickFest started having a west coast presence in 2004 with the first Portland, Oregon convention called BrickFest PDX. The Portland convention repeated in 2007 and 2009, and in 2006 there was a BrickFest at the Sheraton Hotel in Tysons Corner VA. There was originally to be a BrickFest in Portland in 2011 on March 25-27, but when that was canceled the Bricks by the Bay team (which was planning to skip 2011) scrambled to put together a convention on those dates. The Portland LEGO fans have started a new convention called Bricks Cascade, starting in 2012.
BricksWest, Carlsbad, CA
In 2002 and 2003, California had its own LEGO convention, BricksWest. Based at LEGOLAND in Carlsbad (near San Diego) the convention featured a unique opportunity to display your LEGO creations within the park itself. Unfortunately due to financial difficulties on the part of the event organizer the event was canceled after two years.