Thursday, June 2, 2022

#tbt Lego Fan Fest

Well, I didn't plan on taking this long to write this post, but life has a way of running down the track whether or not we're ready for it!  Anyways... today I thought I'd do a throwback post to the Lego Fan Festival that we went to a few weeks ago.  As you probably recall, Eliot and I attended the event Saturday April 30th and Sunday May 1st.

The event was the BrickUniverse Maine Lego Fan Expo put on my BrickUniverse.  Due to the ongoing pandemic, the event had timed tickets where you were allowed to enter and browse.  On Saturday, we were scheduled to go in with my family for the 5:30-8:00 pm session and on Sunday Eliot and I had tickets to the 2:00-5:00 pm session.

Both days were a lot of fun; although, Saturday was probably the more fun of the two days.  Eliot and I enjoyed spending time with my parents, Nana and Jeremy at the event.  Saturday, Eliot, Jeremy and I met them at Friendly's and got a to go order that we ate out in the parking lot.  Then, we drove over to the event in two cars.  While we only got to see my parents and Nana for a few hours, it was still nice to see them! 

The other highlight of our Saturday session was that I was able to meet longtime blog follower Joan!  Eliot and I were wandering around while my family was sitting down to take a break, and a lady approached me asking if I was Melissa Cady.  I replied yes and I knew who she had to be before she even said it.  (Joan... in person!!!)  I was so excited to meet her in person after we've talked online for so long!

I feel like I need to pause for a minute to preface this by saying that I love when people approach me "in the wild", but I should come with a warning.  I'm like an overexcited Golden Retriever puppy.  While puppies will jump all over you and tackle you to death with kisses, I will probably embrace you in a giant hug before I'm even aware that it is happening.  I'm a hugger, and I need that on a warning label.

After finding out who she was, I immediately gave Joan a giant hug.  It wasn't until afterwards that I remembered we're still in the middle of a pandemic and I shouldn't be hugging people without their permission.  (I'm sorry Joan!)  While we didn't have too much time to talk, it was so nice to meet her in person.  I was amazed that we both happened to be at the event in the same time session!  It was meant to be!

Sunday wasn't as entertaining as Saturday, but we took advantage of the quiet.  Most of the people who wanted to go to the event had already been.  Eliot and I took Sunday afternoon as an opportunity to go back and take more pictures.  He brought his nice DSLR camera and I took more pictures on my phone.  We didn't get to the session right at the start time, so that meant that things were quieting down by the time we got there.  We definitely saw more of the models the second day.  We also were glad we waited for the crowds to die down a bit before purchasing a few things!

Before we left Saturday, I bought two light-up magic wands at one of the booths.  I'm hoping that we can use one of them on our Disney Cinderella Castle Lego set once Eliot and I assemble it.  Tinker Bell can have a light up wand now!!!  Then, I'll probably use the second one in my office somewhere!

Eliot and I also went back to purchase few things on Sunday.  We stayed away from the Lego sets that you could buy online and in stores, and instead focused on custom or rare things we saw at the expo.  First, we bought the custom Sanderson Sisters mini figures that I had really wanted after seeing them on Saturday.

We also bought another mini figure at that booth... but we don't talk about it.

Eliot surprised me with a Crayon mini figure when I left for a minute to go use the restroom.  He knows how much I love crayons!  We also got a BrickUniverse Maine mini figure and BrickUniverse Maine 2022 brick.  (Ok... so we were actually supposed to get two bricks, but apparently someone stole a bunch of them the previous day so by the time we showed up on Sunday they were out of them.  Since we paid for it ahead of time, we're supposed to get a replacement in the mail though!)

As for the BrickUniverse Maine Lego Fan Expo event itself, there were so many things to see.  There's no way that I can show you everything without going on forever.  But I'll see if I can give you an overview of some of my personal favorite models that we saw.

When we first entered the exhibit room, we were met with a ton of Lego models of buildings and architecture of New York City built by Jonathan Lopes.  Obviously, the architecture nut in me was completely impressed.  The first thing that caught my eye was the giant model of the Brooklyn Bridge that must have spanned 10 feet.

Another model that stood out was the current World Trade Center and Freedom Tower by Rocco Buttliere.  He even included the memorial sit where the original World Trade Tower buildings once stood.

There was also a model of the former World Trade Center.

Finally, I really loved the model of Grand Central Station.  Seeing it always reminds me of the many trips to New York City for our annual yearbook conference!

I was especially impressed with the Lego models of buildings that I have seen in person.  One of my favorite displays was of Paris and the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower.  I absolutely fell in love with Paris when I went there my junior year of high school.  These models definitely brought me back to exploring the city.

Another place that I've been in person and was impressed to see in Lego form was Vatican City.  I went to Rome during my senior year of college with a group of kids from colleges across the US and it was the most amazing experience.  I loved going to the Vatican, seeing the Sistine Chapel in person and exploring St. Peter's Square. 

While I haven't been to London in person, I was really impressed with this model.

I also enjoyed this model of Mt. Rushmore.  I've always wanted to go there!

One of the exhibits we were able to explore more on Sunday (when it was quiet) was the Air and Space Exhibit by Lia Chan.  The models were really cool and she put so much detail into them!  I really liked the larger mini figure astronaut models she built!

I personally thought the most impressive models at the show were built by Lego artist Paul Hetherington.  The detail in his models was completely insane.  Each time I looked at one of his pieces, I saw something new that I hadn't seen before.

This Alice in Wonderland inspired piece was cool.  You can even see the Disney Lego mini figures of Alice and Cheshire Cat in the bottom right if you look hard enough!

I also enjoyed the details in "The Edge of Glory" which was partly inspired by Coco.

I think my favorite model of the entire BrickUniverse event was the one of Poseidon.

Underneath Poseidon and his throne was a little Atlantis like city.  Some of the pieces moved back and forth, and some spun.  There was also a Spongebob Squarepants mini figure in the clam shell in the back!

Finally, the thing that inspired me the most from the BrickUniverse Fan Expo was the Art on the Block exhibit in the very back of the expo center.  I've seen kits at the Lego store where you can build your own Lego artwork, but I never really considered making some of your own.  Seeing these definitely got some gears moving in my brain...

I was completely inspired when I saw these Lego pieces of our favorite mice!

Now, I really want to make some of my own to display in our house!

As you can see, Eliot and I had a great time at the BrickUniverse Maine Lego Fan Expo.  We had hoped to see more larger pieces though.  We always awestruck by the giant Lego figures on display at the Disney shopping districts.  We also thought there would be more larger scale models, but we were still impressed by everything we saw.

Although it wasn't exactly what we were expecting, Eliot and I are both glad that we went to the Lego Fan Fest while it was in Portland.  It definitely inspired me to work on my Disney Princess Lego sets sometime sooner than later!  °o°

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