We continue our series of Admin interviews by talking to Ben Ellermann of Classic Castle.
TBB: Can you tell me a little bit about yourself? What are you known for other than an Admin at CC?
Ben: My name is Ben Ellermann and I am a huge LEGO Castle fan! On Classic-Castle.com I work on contests, interviews, various articles, and the sets archives. Offline I am involved with my local lug in the Saint Louis area, GatewayLug. I also have been a theme coordinator and/or presented at North American Lego fan festivals (BrickFest, BrickWorld, and BrickFair). From 2006 to 2008, I served as a Lego Ambassador giving fan feedback to TLG. Other than designing castle mocs, I also enjoy building in the Western, Pirate, and sculpture themes. Occasionally I dabble in Town and Space as well. This year I also teamed up with several fans to found a new Pirate fan site: www.forbiddencove.com
TBB: How long has Classic Castle been in existence? Can you give a brief history?
Ben: Classic-Castle.com has been a part of the online fan community since September 2003. A small group of like-minded Castle fans felt that www.lugnet.com was not meeting all of the castle communities needs. The active early administrators were Troy Cefaratti, Anthony Sava, Lenny Hoffman, Kevin Blocksidge, and myself.
TBB: What is purpose of CC?
Ben: Our mission is to meet the needs of LEGO Castle fans. We try to do this by providing castle articles, set reviews, building tips, preview pictures of new sets, contests, highlighted mocs, designer interviews, a chatroom, and a friendly organized forum.
TBB The site is called Classic Castle. What does that mean? Do you exclude things that aren’t “classic”?
Ben: When Classic-Castle was founded in 2003, the retail Lego Castle theme was not in production. Castle fans were looking for a well-designed Classic-Castle line of products similar to lines of the 1980’s and 1990’s.
We accept all castle fans, including those who love Knights Kingdom 2. Many fans have a favorite castle sub-theme from when they were children. We have a General Lego forum for discussion of other Lego themes in which are fans are interested, such as Space, Pirates, and Steampunk just to name a few.
TBB What is your vision for the future of CC?
Ben: My vision is that Classic-Castle will remain relevant by continuing to meet the needs of our community. Fan sites must be able to adapt and grow over time in order to survive. To do this we must always listen to the fans and incorporate their suggestions into the site.
TBB What issues are you dealing with as CC grows?
Ben: Real life is an issue that most Lego fan sites have to deal with. Members, moderators, and administrators often move on from our community due to real life circumstances. Fortunately we are always gaining new members, excellent moderators, and talented admins. Classic-Castle has always been a team effort. This prevents our site from ceasing to exist if one person tires of running it.
TBB Why should someone join CC?
Ben: If you are a Lego fan who loves castle, please check out our site and forum. We are the source for all your Lego Castle needs.
Classic-Castle also recently completed a forum upgrade and it’s looking good. Go join now to immerse yourself in all things medieval!