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 33,000+ square footage of ballroom space to look at our creations on display and buy from our vendors.
What ages are welcome at the public exposition?
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.
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.
When is the Public Exposition?
The Public Exposition takes place on the final day of the convention.
How do the workshops work?
On Thursday we will have workshops which give in-depth, hands-on training on LEGO skills from experts in their areas. To attend workshops you must be a registered convention attendee and pay an extra workshop fee. In addition, some of the workshops include a materials fee to cover the cost of the LEGO parts you will be using, but of course you get to keep the parts!
How much does it cost to attend the public day?
Public Expo prices have not yet been announced. Check this space for updates and make sure you are on our mailing list for announcements.
* strollers will not be permitted in the exhibit/vendor ballroom areas. Limited parking for strollers will be available in the lobby.
I paid to attend the public day, now what? Do I get a ticket or something?
Public Day passes are 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. On entry you will receive a hand stamp which gives access to both ballrooms.
How much does it cost to attend the full convention?
Convention prices have not yet been announced. Check this space for updates and make sure you are on our mailing list for announcements.
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.
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. You will be required to show ID at check-in.
What’s the difference between Basic and Deluxe registration?
Basic registration gets you access to all the events from Thursday evening through Sunday (the workshops on Thursday are not included), 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 exposition?
Registered attendees will get full access all weekend, including the ability to display your creations and participate in a wide range of convention activities, 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 the full convention.
Will there be contests or prizes?
Yes! We have an extensive awards system where the MOCs (My Own Creations) on display are judged (See the Exhibiting your Creations page) and the winners will receive trophies built out of LEGO as well as a free LEGO set. In addition, Bricks by the Bay and its sponsors and event organizers will be giving away lots of awesome door prizes. There will also be games and other contests for registered attendees where you can win prizes and trophies (see the See the Games and Contests page). More events are being planned. All prizes are for full convention attendees only.
If I am bringing models to display, can I get in free?
Maybe. We have a new Special Exhibitor Program this year to provide support to builders who are building and bringing big impressive creations which will wow the public at our Public Exposition. If you think you will qualify for this program, fill out an application form.
Will there be a discount at the LEGO Store?
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. See the Exhibiting your Creations page for more details.
What size are the tables?
In most areas we are using tables provided by the hotel or convention center. These come in several sizes: 6’ x 30”, 6’ x 18”, 8’ x 30”, and 8’ x 18”. There will be rope stanchions placed 2’ from the tables to keep the crowds away on Sunday.
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.
If you want your MOC to sit on the ground or you are providing a special table, you can indicate this when registering it and we will allocate floor space accordingly for you.
Note: It is very important that you enter accurate dimensions for your MOCs when registering them to enable our coordinators to request the right amount of space.
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 will be keeping the Bayshore room open late each night for adult attendees to socialize and play games after the main ballrooms close at midnight, and we encourage you to stay at the hotel in order to enjoy that evening to the fullest extent possible. Alcoholic beverages may be purchased at the hotel bar but outside alcoholic beverages are not permitted as it would jeopardize the hotel’s liquor license.
Use the hotel registration link to reserve a room at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara is offering rooms at the special rate of $139.00/night (Single/Double occupancy) Thu-Sun. Do not call the hotel Front Desk to make reservations.
What are the convention hours?
- Thursday, August 18, 2016 (10am-midnight) workshops and exhibit setup (evening: opening ceremonies)
- Friday, August 19, 2016 (7am-midnight) convention (evening: keynote speech)
- Saturday, August 20, 2016 (7am-midnight) convention (evening: awards)
- Sunday, August 21, 2016 (7am-10pm) convention (public hours 10am-4pm with last entry at 3pm, closing ceremony, then teardown)
Setup of exhibits will open Thursday mid-day. Vendor setup is Friday morning.
See the schedule for a complete listing of activities.
What do I do when I get there?
Public Exposition: (Sunday August 21st only) If you pre-registered online, bring a printout of your EventBrite receipt or have the barcode on your smart phone for easy scanning. We will stamp your hand to enable entry into both halls. Note that nobody will be permitted to enter after 3:00 pm. If you do not register in advance, bring $15.00 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.
VIP Public Exposition: (Sunday August 21st only) Show up by 8:30am to make sure you are able to enter at 9am sharp to get the most of your VIP pass. You will receive your printed VIP brick and wristband, and be allowed in at 9am. There will be a separate “VIP” line. Sales of this type of pass are limited to 500 tickets total, so buy them online to ensure availability.
Full Convention Attendees: (Thursday-Sunday, August 18th-21st) 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.