Thursday, August 2, 2012

visit me: legoland

recently kansas city opened the doors to their very own legoland discovery center and since we had my nephews in town to visit a few weeks back, we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to check it out and get our lego on.

first things first:  tickets are $20 for adults and $16 for kids under 13.  you can buy them online in advance for a 10% discount, but you'll need to do it a week or so in advance.  we waited until about 4 days out and while there were still tickets available for the time we wanted to go, there weren't any in groups of five - so reserve your tickets early.

you also get to bypass the line if you purchase online.  if you walk-up, we found that going in the late afternoon (4pm) the line was minimal as was the crowd inside.

i appreciate when kid-friendly places take into account what it's actually like to have kids and be a kid waiting for something exciting to happen.  lines are agonizing.  some kids will stand and beat on the door, begging to get in...

...and that can't be helped.

but having legos on hand to distract away from the painful ten minutes of waiting, is a nice touch and minimizes the pain drastically.  so...well done for that.

a couple of things you need to know before you go:   your kiddos need to wear socks if they want to play in the "soft play area" and chances are they'll want to.

we missed this "rule" but conveniently you can purchase socks once you are there.  i was prepared to make a $10 "souvenir" sock purchase but was actually pleasantly surprised that the socks they sell are only $1.  bonus points for you sir lego, but next time we'll remember to pack or wear our own.

building cars to compete in the pinewood derby-like racing feature was the highlight of our visit.  a good amount of time was spent here building and perfecting vehicles.

some very strange and slightly ocd children will insist on outdoing the others by adding animal passengers to their vehicles.  currently there appear to be no rules against this. 

the best news is that you can easily spend a few hours here which makes the investment worth the price.  i looked at it like the price of seeing two movies at the theatre - and since there is a short 3D film involved, you feel like you're at least getting that same value plus a lot more.  brains are at work here.  and aside from the interactive ipads at the entrance, i really can't put a price on the value of non-electronic imaginative play.

i was excited for the kids, they were clearly having a ball, but it wasn't until we hit the "lego miniland" that i was really blown away.  do not miss this.  it was by far my favorite part.  i'll probably get the stats all wrong, but i want to say that this village is comprised of 1.5 million legos that make up a striking and awe-inspiring replica of kansas city in the daytime.  and then the lights dim and the entire city lights up at night.  it took 6 months for the master builders (yes - i want this job) to complete our fair city.

it.  is.  awesome.

every major landmark in the city is represented and the details will blow your mind.  i don't want to give it all away because you need to see it to really appreciate it,  but here are just a few of the highlights...

i couldn't get over the detail and especially loved how everything, right down to the major city periodicals like the kansas city star, ink magazine and the pitch were even represented.

evan couldn't get enough of the HVAC systems displayed on roofs of some of the the plaza buildings.  he says those look like 10-ton packaged units...whatever that means.

all in all we're going to give lego land a thumbs up.  you can easily spend several hours inside and as a mom, i felt like i could easily keep track of the kiddos without having to be in a hundred places at once.  it's big enough yet small enough to really enjoy.

its great to have new and exciting things in the city and we love that crown center is home to this and the new sea life aquarium - which we have yet to check out.  i can see this being a great attraction for visitors to the area, but also something fun for the residents of kc as well, especially in the winter months ahead.

think you'll make a habit of going?  check out the annual pass options & parents, look into the no kids allowed lego nights.


  1. I have been avoiding this place like the plague, but your post makes me want to go! For what it's worth, I don't think the aquarium is as good. It's very expensive (although I found a coupon online) and it only takes about 45 minutes. It's mostly looking - one small area of touching.

  2. sarah - we were right with you, the price really turned us off at first, but the kids had a ball. it wasn't quite as large as i anticipated, but in the end, that allowed for more focus. i would really like to see a discount for residents. you expect to make an investment on vacation, but it would be nice for everyone in the community to have the opportunity to attend.

  3. Wow, the replicas of places around the city are instantly recognizable....awesome detail! I can see this being just Evan's kind of place, since he got Lego sets for all special occasions for, oh, 10 years or so when he "was" a kid.


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