A LEGO convention? What do you do at a LEGO convention?
Bricks By The Bay is just one of a number of conventions and gatherings throughout the world where fans of LEGO (whether builders, artists, or hobbyists) can gather and share enthusiasm for their favorite plastic brick. They bring creations to show off, give and watch presentations on developments in the hobby, play games, and most of all have fun. The weekend culminates with a public show where we invite the public to come through the 22,500 square foot ballroom and look at our creations on display and buy from our vendors.
What ages are welcome at the public exhibition?
We welcome everyone to come to the public show. There are models on display to inspire and entertain people of all ages, and products for sale by our vendors for every LEGO-related interest. Children must be supervised by an adult at all times – no touching allowed!
What ages are welcome at the convention?
Most of these activities are geared toward adult hobbyists and older teens, but all ages are welcome. No matter what your age, if you are a fan of LEGO, there’s something for you at Bricks By The Bay. Minors must register along with an adult, and younger children must be supervised by an adult at all times.
Where/when is it?
Bricks By The Bay 2013 is a special three day event held Friday, August 9th though Sunday, August 11th, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara, 5101 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara, CA 95054 USA. The hotel phone number is (408) 200-1234 (do not call this number for hotel reservations!).
Friday and Saturday are registered attendee exclusive days. On Sunday we will have a public exhibition from 10AM to 4PM, with last entry at 3PM.
How much does it cost to attend the public day?
Admission to just the public day (Sunday) is $10 at the door, $8 in advance, and free for kids 2 years old and under. Online sales will end Saturday, August 10.
Admission is also free for one person if you stay at the hotel using our group rate (one free pass per room night). Use the hotel registration link to reserve a room at the special rate starting at $109/night (single/double) on Saturday and/or Sunday night.
I paid to attend the public day, now what? Do I get a ticket or something?
Public Day passes will be sold via the EventBrite ticketing system. Please print out your ticket issued by the EventBrite site and bring it with you so we can scan the barcode for easier entry. There will also be a list of names of pre-paid ticket holders. To enable re-entry we will stamp your hand to show you’ve paid.
How much does it cost to attend the full convention?
For the full convention, prices are as follows:
Type Start End Basic Deluxe Early Bird TBA Jun 27, 2013 11:59 PM $ 50.00 $ 85.00 Normal Jun 28, 2013 12:00 AM Jul 26, 2013 11:59 PM $ 60.00 $ 95.00 Late Jul 27, 2013 12:00 AM Aug 2, 2013 11:59 PM $ 70.00 $ 105.00
Deluxe Registration includes Basic Registration, plus:
- T-shirt ($15 value)
- Pin ($5 value)
- Event Kit ($20 value)
- Priced to save $5 off a la carte pricing
Registration prices will increase over time, so register early to get the best deal!
Guests who stay at the host hotel will received special hotel rates and a $20 discount on their convention registration, as well as free internet access in their room and the hotel lobby (be sure to ask for the Bricks By The Bay rate and save your confirmation number). We have negotiated a special rate of $109 per night (single/double occupancy; add $25 per person for triple or quad) for convention.
See the registration page for more details or to sign up.
I paid to attend the convention, now what? Do I get a ticket or something?
No, everything is Will Call. Your information is stored in our database and we will have your badge waiting for you at the convention check-in desk.
What’s the difference between Basic and Deluxe registration?
Basic registration gets you access to all the events Friday-Sunday, your personalized brick-built badge, space to display your creations, freebies and exclusive deals. There are door prizes, contests, and games throughout the weekend just for the convention attendees.
Deluxe registration gets you all the benefits of Basic plus a t-shirt, metal lapel pin and exclusive custom kit, giving you a $5 discount off the a la carte price. See the registration page for more details.
What’s the difference between a registered attendee and someone who comes to the public exhibition?
Registered attendees will get exclusive perks all weekend (see previous question), while the public will only get to see the exhibits and vendors on Sunday.
Can I bring my own creations?
Only if you are a registered attendee. For logistical as well as insurance reasons, we cannot allow the general public to display their creations.
Will there be contests or prizes?
Yes! The LEGO group, other sponsors, and event organizers are going to give away tons of awesome door prizes. There will also be games and contests for registered attendees where you can win prizes and trophies. More events are being planned. All prizes are for full convention attendees only.
Will there be a discount at the LEGO Store?
Sadly, no. LEGO has discontinued their store discount program for all conventions as of January, 2013.
What are the themes?
Bricks By The Bay has a number of themes for displaying your models. Here are the 2013 themes (subject to change):
- Art (sculptures, mosaics, etc.)
- Bionicle and Hero Factory
- Castle, Fantasy, and Historical (Castle, Pirates, etc.)
- High Seas (ships and boats)
- Model Team (realistic models of cars and other vehicles)
- Robotics and Machines (TECHNIC, MINDSTORMS, etc.)
- Space and Science Fiction
- Town and Train
- Large Displays (Dioramas, club/team creations, etc.)
What size are the tables?
In most areas we are using tables provided by the hotel. These come in several sizes: 6′ x 30″, 6′ x 18″, 8′ x 30″, and 8′ x 18″.
For the Bay Area LEGO Train Club group display we are using tables owned by the club and local individuals that are sized to fit LEGO baseplates and have Plexiglas “sneeze guards” affixed to them. These tables are approximately 5′ by 30″.
Do I need to reserve tables for my displays?
No, tables are allocated to each of the themes. When you register and enter your MOC (My Own Creation) displays into our database, we use that information to determine how many tables to allocate to each theme. When you set up on Friday morning, the theme coordinators for each area will allocate that space to individual displays.
For Large Displays, you may be given your own tables or your display may be placed within a relevant theme area. Indicate your space needs when you sign up and we will do our best to accommodate them.
Do I have to stay at the hotel?
No, but we are strongly encouraging you do. You’ll have more time to meet and talk with LEGO fans coming in from many states, and even if you live locally, you will save yourself time driving to and from home each day. Not only is it exceptionally convenient but the success of the convention depends on bringing business to the hotel. If we do not have enough hotel rooms sold, we will be charged extra fees.
We are also having a no host bar on Saturday night for adult attendees, and encourage you to stay at the hotel in order to enjoy that evening without the risk of drunk driving.
Use the hotel registration link to reserve a room at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara is offering rooms at the special rate of $109/night (Single/Double occupancy) Thu-Sun. Do not call the hotel Front Desk to make reservations.
What are the convention hours?
- Thursday (8pm-midnight) setup (note: this may be postponed till Friday morning)
- Friday (7am-midnight) convention (evening: keynote speech)
- Saturday (7am-midnight) convention (evening: awards, no host bar until 2am)
- Sunday (7am-10pm) convention (public hours 10am-4pm with last entry at 3pm, closing ceremony, then teardown)
See the schedule for a complete listing of activities.
What do I do when I get there?
Public: (Sunday August 11th only) If you pre-registered online, bring a printout of your EventBrite receipt. There’s a hand-stamp for re-entry. Note that nobody will be permitted to enter after 3:00 pm. If you do not register in advance, bring $10.00 cash per person (children under 2 free). Either way, be prepared for the possibility of long lines, though hopefully we will not have to make people wait too long to get in.
Attendees: (Friday-Sunday, August 9th-11th) The first thing to do will be to find the check-in desk and get your badge. This will identify you as an official attendee as well as help people recognize you. For many people this will be the first time they meet face to face, having your badge on will make it easier for everyone. If you are bringing your own creations for display the next thing to do will be to find your theme coordinator(s) and start setting your models up on the tables. Be sure to check the schedule in your program or posted on the wall to pick what events you want to take part in.
Can I buy LEGO there?
Yes, there will be a number of vendors selling not only LEGO, but custom kits, t-shirts and LEGO related products. See the vendors page for more details.