Virtual BrickCon 2020 seeks to blaze new trails by extending a global invite, and more [News]

Long before the Covid19 pandemic rocked the world, the BrickCon staff chose to playfully name this year’s theme “Hindsight”. The idea was based on the old expression, “hindsight is 20/20,” referring to past events and decisions being clearer in the present. It was hoped that the theme would spark creations that poked fun at the past. Unfortunately, most of us around the world could not have seen this coming, nor prevented it if we did. The irony has been palpable and even painful for millions of people across the globe. There’s no denying it’s been a tough year – for everyone. But one part of “hindsight” that benefits BrickCon, is the fact that it’s one of the last conventions of the year, and thus, they’ve had a chance to learn from all the rest. This con promises to be different than the others. Read on to learn how, and in what ways you can help.

Just like the real thing

Obviously, it’s tough to compare a virtual convention to the tangibleness of the real thing. Some people have a hard time seeing how this could ever be any fun. But this year BrickCon is making the most of it and is doing what it can to give you a convention that is just like the real deal. Prizes, giveaways, games, swag… it’s all going to be there! They have tiered pricing for attendee tickets. So you could opt to just view the convention and be eligible for the prize draw, or go for a complete package. What does that entail? They’ll send you your goodie bag, tee-shirt, con model, and prizes right to your door. (Even if you live a thousand miles away!) They’ll also have a full lineup of vendors at their Brick Bazaar.

Just like the real thing, this con will be highly dependent on volunteers. The volunteer-based Senior Staff has been working hard but says they need help to make this convention run smoothly. Each year dozens of volunteers assist in everything from event set-up to running the games. While the roles are slightly adjusted this time, the need won’t be any different. They’re calling these folks “Trusted Virtual Guides” and are urging anyone with interest to contact them. There’s more info on this opportunity below.

Adding an exciting new category for build submissions

Digital builders, this is your time to shine! BrickCon is capitalizing on the virtual nature of the convention by including a new competitive category for virtual creations. In the past, builders who excel at digital renders haven’t had much of an option for showing off their stuff at LEGO conventions. Now registered attendees with digital submissions can exhibit and earn prizes, just like everyone else. In addition, BrickCon is taking video submissions for their “Wacky Race” contest, so anyone in the world (registered for the con) can participate in an epic way. The game, with almost no rules, involves building vehicles that speed down ramps and win prizes and trophies for anything from the best crash to the farthest distance traveled. There’s even an award for the most interesting journey by the vehicle’s “pilot” figure.

Inclusion in more ways than one

BrickCon is not just including digital creations and global gaming. Diversity and inclusion have been a big topic lately. They want to make it very clear that this is a convention that wants to both support and strengthen the diversity in our community. They want to offer opportunities for all to participate and enjoy the convention to the fullest, and they are asking for ideas on how to further that commitment. In addition, registered attendees can even apply to present/host a presentation or meetup themselves.

BrickCon also promises to act on this in another big way. While they’ve had many attendees from other countries in the past, going virtual now allows people who weren’t able to travel to Seattle the ability to participate. They want to extend an invitation to all LEGO fans out there, hoping people across the globe can join in on the fun! But this requires some major help:

The staff of BrickCon has indicated that Trusted Virtual Guides are going to be the backbone of this convention. They’re seeking people who are very familiar with online meeting software like Zoom (or are willing to be trained) to help monitor and moderate the sessions. In addition, they’re also seeking “Buddies” to be virtual penpals (email) with folks who need a little one-on-one help with navigating the con. (This program is also just for those who want to make a new friend.)

A convention that belongs to you

If you think you can help, BrickCon urges you to reach out to them. They believe they cannot make this possible without you. Once they receive commitments from volunteers, they’ll post that information on social media, encouraging others to feel comfortable joining. The all-volunteer Senior Staff is working overtime to attempt something that has never been done before. They want the community to know that you are the key to a great convention.

The Brothers Brick is an official sponsor of BrickCon.