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July 3, 2018 > Convention celebrates the love of LEGO

Convention celebrates the love of LEGO

Submitted By Rebecca Downing

Greetings fans of LEGO! Mark your calendar now to join us this summer for the 60th anniversary of the LEGO brick at the Bricks by the Bay (BBTB) convention, Thursday, July 12 ? Sunday, July 15.

The Santa Clara Convention Center is the location of our annual gathering of LEGO builders, enthusiasts and fans! Our convention is one of the largest in the Western United States and is entirely run by volunteers who donate their time and talents to bring you an exciting four days of amazing displays, inspiring speakers, workshops, games, contests and opportunities to meet and have fun with other LEGO devotees.

Who are LEGO builders? The Bay Area is full of creative people enjoying the unlimited possibilities of the brick!

Every year Erik Wilson and his brother looked forward to getting a Christmas package from their grandmother in Sweden. It arrived full of treasures: cookies, picture books, and, best of all, LEGO sets from nearby Denmark. In those days LEGO wasn?t available in the United States and the pieces were either red or white. The boys built spaceships, castles, and robots long before pre-designed modern sets arrived on the scene.

Years later Wilson?s brother pulled out their old LEGO collection for his children and gave Wilson a couple of modern sets as compensation. Wilson thought, Why would I want this stuff? followed rapidly by wait a minute these are really cool! He started buying more sets and has again built castles, spaceships, and robots and found a special love of building models of classical Greek and Roman architecture including the Parthenon of Athens and the Colosseum of Rome.

LEGO complements Wilson?s job as a biochemist that also involves putting small pieces together, and the rest of his family is now involved designing and building LEGO creations they have brought to the Bricks by the Bay convention too. As president of Bricks by the Bay, Wilson?s time is now full of administrative duties but whenever he needs a break, he pulls out a box of bricks and creates something new!

When you think of LEGO, it usually conjures up images of buildings, spaceships, and other three-dimensional creations. But there are other LEGO builders who focus their talents in a different way. One of them is artist and native New Yorker Patty Sherin who has a passion for color, patterns, and the creativity that comes with using your hands to create beautiful, engaging LEGO art pieces people of all ages can enjoy.

What began as a hobby at the age of ten, when her grandmother taught her to crochet, quickly grew into her life?s ambition. As Sherin grew older she had the opportunity to learn how to cross-stitch pictures and plastic canvas patterns, further expanding her artistic experiences in college. In 2012, she received a LEGO Volkswagen T1 Camper Van, which ignited her love of the colorful stacking blocks we all know and love.

A hobbyist turned professional artist, Sherin?s work has awarded her the Best Mosaic for ?Rainbow Drops? at the 2015 Bricks by the Bay annual convention, been displayed in the Sanchez Art Center in Pacifica as well as The Museum of American Heritage in Palo Alto. She?s also the recipient of the ?Amazingly Awesome? trophy from the Pop Culture theme at 2017 Bricks by the Bay for her ?Brick and Morty? mosaic. Today, Sherin 's company Mo'Brickz helps improve the quality of life of seniors living in memory care communities with LEGO Duplo.

There are two ways to enjoy Bricks by the Bay:

1. Attend our public exposition July 14 ? 15 for a fun-filled, family-friendly weekend. Explore and enjoy the amazing Animation-themed LEGO creations built by LEGO hobbyists and artists from across the nation displayed throughout the 33,000 square foot Grand Ballroom. Visit our vendors nearby, selling all kinds of LEGO and LEGO related accessories. The public exposition will be open Saturday, 11 a.m. ? 3 p.m. (last entry 2 p.m.) and Sunday, 10 a.m. ? 4 p.m. (last entry 3 p.m.).

2. Attend the entire four-day convention, July 12-15. That?s right, four whole brick-filled days of games, workshops, My Own Creation (MOC) displays and contests, guest speakers, door prizes, brick-building workshops, meet & greets, costume contests and more! All ages are welcome (children younger than 18 must attend the convention with a registered adult). Our theme this year is Animation! Convention attendees build and display a variety of creations inspired by a favorite animated movie, character, or even a MOC that moves.

To register or for more information, visit

Bricks by the Bay
Thursday, Jul 12 ? Sunday, Jul 15
Public Exposition:
Saturday, Jul 14: 11 a.m. ? 3 p.m.
Sunday, Jul 15: 10 a.m. ? 4 p.m.
Four-day convention scheduled available upon registration
Four Day Convention: $90
Public Exposition: Advance, one day tickets: $11 adults, $7 kids 12 and under
Advance two-day tickets: $16 adults, $11 kids 12 and under
Event day standard tickets: $15 or $25 for two-day pass (cash only at door)
VIP Online: $32 for both days

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