Pros: FREE if you fill out the club coupon, special offers, advanced notice of new sets.
Cons: Issues seem sporadic, limited to two free subscriptions per household.
I can't remember exactly when we started receiving the Lego Magazine or when each of the brood were officially sworn into the Lego Club – but I can say in all honesty – this is one magazine that we simply can’t live without. Having the ability to see sets before they are released at the stores is just one of the many perks that this free magazine offers its readers and if you have a Lego addict this is something that you must sign up for. If you have ever seen a kid on a sugar high [bouncing off the walls] you’ll be prepared for the madness that ensues when the mail carrier deliveries the newest edition of the Lego Magazine. Around here it’s complete mayhem with everyone [myself included] digging through the pages looking to see all the new sets, contests and catalog exclusives.
Signing Up If you have ever bought a Lego set you have more than likely come across a small coupon for the Lego Club. If you haven’t bothered to fill this out and send it in – what exactly are you waiting for? In exchange for about 30 seconds of your time you will receive a very cool Lego Magazine delivered to your doorstep about every two months. That’s not all you’ll get either! Most of the recent issues have come sealed in plastic bags to protect the Bionicle comic books and trading cards that have been tucked away with the magazine.
If you can’t find a form to fill out stop at the website and fill out a cyber coupon to get your subscription started. The coupon requires a minimal amount of information including name, address, age, date of birth and a parents signature. The magazines usually start to arrive about four to six weeks after you mail in your form or fill one out at the website so be sure to do it now so you don’t miss out on any of the action.
One little piece of information that I want to add to this section is about signing up for the Lego Club online. When you request a subscription to the magazine and inclusion to the Lego Club you will be given a customer number that will be featured on the back of every Lego magazine that you receive. This establishes you as a recognized customer and tracks all your purchases. This is great if you ever need to request replacement pieces, inquire about the availability of a set or series or just need to have a question answered. You needn’t worry about receiving unwanted email or postal junk mail because Lego protects your privacy and never sells your name or information to third parties.
Information As a collector and self professed junkie of all things Lego, I find the magazine a useful tool to learn about the new sets before they hit the market as well as small little bits of information that are added to almost every single page. Sometimes you really need to see the figures up close or different angles of the completed set before you plunk down a large chunk of change for a set. The Lego magazine gives you detailed information on every singe item they sell and if you ever need more – they are a toll free call away. All of the items sold through the Lego Magazine and in the Shop At Home supplements come with a full color photo, set number, age recommendation and price.
The lay out of the products and information about the sets is easy to read, carries enough detail to allow you to make a qualified decision and doesn’t confuse you in the process. In some cases larger sets will be featured on a two page spread with all of the extras and perks clearly noted. This allows you to see some of the working parts, the scale of the set and how it will work when combined with other Lego products. The huge posters that are sent from time to time allow you to see a complete series assembled and on display. The posters arrive folded so if you want to hang them up I suggest laying them lay flat on a table for a while to get the creases out. Some of the larger four page posters are great for framing providing that you can find the right size frame.
Contests I don’t think I have ever received an issue where there hasn’t been a contest offer or sweepstakes coupon. Some of the more popular contests involved winning Soccer sets, a complete Harry Potter castle, Bionicle collectors set and a Belville princess castle. Some contests involve building a new or unique model and others are as simple as filling out a contest coupon. Be sure to check out the fast food restaurants as well, they have mail in sweepstakes entries for contests – the most recent one being for the Soccer series. You will have to pay postage to mail these in but you might just get lucky enough to win one of the grand prizes!
Cool Creations Each issue features at least two pages of original designs sent in by Lego lovers from all over the world. You’ll get the chance to see up close designs created by other Lego aficionados along with photos of the artists themselves. This is a great area to explore to get ideas for making your own unique designs as well as how to expand the ones you have already built.
To send in your own colorful creation, simple send your name, age, address, model name and photo and mail it in to be considered for publication. With any luck my boys will be featured in the magazine some day soon! This section of the magazine is great for getting ideas of what to do with your bulk or stock pieces, how to improve basic sets and how to combine different sets to make mega structures. The boys love this part of the magazine almost as much as they love the Shop At Home exclusives.
Advertisements So far I have never come across a non-Lego type advertisement in the Lego Magazine. Sure you’ll get the usual adverts for Lego offshoots like Technic, Robotics, Galidor, Bionicle and Mindstorms – but you’ll never see a non-Lego product advertised – that much I can almost guarantee. Since the entire magazine is dedicated to Lego and Lego related items you don’t have to worry about your child coming across something that is questionable or objectionable – the worst that can happen is that he or she hands you a wish list a mile long.
Value For The $$$ Since this is free as part of the Lego Club it’s not really an issue of money now is it? Since the free subscription is limited to two children per household I get two free subscriptions and pay for two – just so that everyone will have their own magazine. I’ve never seen this magazine sold at the newsstand or at any of the bookstores that we frequent so the cover price of $2.95 per issue seems a little strange. If anyone has ever seen this at a retail store – even a Lego store – please leave a comment as I’d like to know if this magazine is indeed “sold”.
The issues are well put together, presented in a very nice manner and are jam packed with useful extras, close out sale specials and provide a great source of entertainment for my boys. Most issues are between 40 and 50 pages but there are exceptions – some are a bit thinner and arrive with comic books [Bionicle] or fold out posters [Life on Mars]. I remember last year receiving a regular issue of the Lego Club Magazine and then a week later a small thin supplement issue. These are not part of the regular subscription and should be considered bonuses. The larger catalogs usually arrive in the late fall when they are getting ready to push the line for the holiday season. About two weeks ago we receive the 2002 holiday issue that was jam packed with all the latest sets and series.
Exploration Being a die-hard Lego fanatic I have seen first hand what these colorful little blocks can do for a childs imagination. The brood learned primary colors, shape recognition, stacking elements, how to follow instructions, combining sets to create larger structures and even simple robotics from the advanced sets. When you add this magazine to your childs life you are giving them the ability to explore and expand their imagination. By seeing what other kids [and adults] have built, created and designed they tap into their own knowledge bank. Hand any adult a Lego Magazine and they’ll flip through the pages, complain about the prices and toss it on the table. Hand a Lego Magazine to a kid – especially one that has a passion for them – and they’ll spend hours flipping back and forth through the pages, ignore the prices and make a mad dash to their Lego stash and start building.
From time to time there are activities in the Lego Magazine, some are basic like the recent Bionicle codes to crack. While this might seem rather silly to take symbols and match them up to the alphabet this is a great learning exercise for kids. They are using their problem solving skills and having fun at the same time. There are also contests that ask you to find items that are hidden on pages within the magazine. Again, this might just seem like foolish fun but it reinforces the “start and finish” of something – and when a child completes it he or she has a feeling of accomplishment. There are some activities that are covered in the magazine that are further explored at the website and since the site is kid friendly you can let your children take the games and activities to a whole new level. If you have never been to the Lego website you really don’t know what you are missing. It’s 100% kid safe so you’ll never have to worry about pop ups from other sites.
Additional Subscriptions The Lego Club / Lego Magazine offer is limited to two subscriptions per household. If you have more than two children you can sign up other members at the cost of $7.95 [$10.70 Canadian] for the two year run. When you look at the benefits of joining the club and getting the magazine – the fee is definitely worth it. Since I have four boys that are extreme Lego freaks I get two free subscriptions and pay for two. Even so, the cost is completely irrelevant. If we would only get the two free subscriptions they would be fighting over them and it would be a complete mayhem. One of the downsides is that most of the time the magazines don’t arrive at the same time. Most of the time we’ll get one or two of them then the next day the rest will arrive. While this is a slight inconvenience the boys are more than willing to share for a day or two until all the stray issues arrive.
Official website - www.lego.com
 453-4652 – Customer Service
PO Box 1308
Enfield, CT 06083 - 1308
The Bottom Line If you have a Lego fanatic in your house this is a magazine that will see a lot of use. I know that we have stacks of these and there isn’t a day that goes by that at least one of the boys goes digging through them to find a set, illustration or design. It’s a great magazine that celebrates the joy of Lego use, is easy enough for a child to read or navigate through and won’t leave the adults out in the cold. This is the best way [next to visiting the internet site] to get up to date information about new sets, Shop At Home exclusives and contests.
As always, thanks for the visit!
^V^ Freak ^V^
© 2011 Freak369
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