25 Dec

Creations for Charity 2013 – Chicago Area Distribution

Posted in Uncategorized on 25.12.13 by

This is my third year of participating as the Chicago-area representative for Creations for Charity, and I have to tell you – this is one of my most favorite parts of the year! I love seeing the LEGO community come together to help those who are less fortunate. This year, thanks to the support of BrickLink and LEGO, we were able to have our best year yet! I was one of the locations chosen for the LEGO donation to Creations for Charity, and it was amazing how much they sent – almost $6,000 worth of LEGO products covering themes from The Lord of the Rings, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ninjago, Technic, and more! Just look at all the LEGO products they sent – it was hard to fit it all into one frame!

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One of my most favorite parts of this organization, is actually in dropping off the LEGO products at the Toys for Tots dropoff point, as I nearly always get to hear about some of the families who will be getting some of our LEGO products! This year, I learned that there was a large Autistic society that had put in a large request for Star Wars LEGO sets, and that Toys for Tots was thrilled that they had a LOT of Star Wars sets to distribute to them! They were also very excited, as they usually have less amounts of toys for older children, and LEGO sets work perfectly for the older kids! I can’t tell you how thankful I am to be part of such a kind-hearted community, and how honored I am to be a part of this charity. Thank you all for your generosity – none of this would be possible – thank you all for being so AWESOME!!!!

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06 Jan

Josh’s Wrapup – Chicago Area Distribution

Posted in Uncategorized on 06.01.13 by

Thank You So Much!

I have to tell you – one of the highlights of my year is participating in the Creations for Charity event!  It is such an honor to be part of an event which brings smiles to so many children’s faces across the world!  I am amazed at the kindness and generosity of so many LEGO fans – that we were able to raise $9300 and having sold over 122 creations and items is a tribute to everyone who helped make this possible!

Buying LEGO

After we start selling the donations from the BrickLink site, we are tasked with finding the best deals that we possibly can on LEGO products.  All of the Area Coordinators, and Nannan especially, start searching and watching stores (and online stores) for great discounts on LEGO products, and when we find various sales we share those with each other.  We also used the website ToysNBricks.com as a great resource for watching for sales.

From my experiences this year, I think the biggest challenge lies in the fact that sales this year on LEGO were very limited.  I am certain that I speak for my fellow Area Coordinators, in saying that nothing is more exciting than getting more LEGO for your money’s worth.  As my colleague in Michigan stated, we generally try to watch for 30% or more off of LEGO themes and 25% or more off of licensed themes.

As I started receiving the LEGO products I purchased for CfC, I kept them in storage under my Christmas tree – it was a great daily reminder of how much we are able to give to Toys for Tots!

 

I thought it might be nice to put a face with the name – and I can’t tell you how much fun it was to have my couch loaded up with LEGO products!

 

The Delivery:

Well, as you can see in the above picture, there were a LOT of LEGO sets to deliver to Toys for Tots – the LEGO themes included:  Lord of the Rings, Marvel Super Heroes, DC Universe Super Heroes, Ninjago, City, Atlantis, Star Wars, Monster Fighters, and Friends, and included all different sized sets from Stocking Stuffer to Full-out-amazing-superawesome-gift-of-the-year-present with sets like Lord of the Rings Mines of Moria!

 

 

There were so many sets, that they almost didn’t fit into the trunk of my Mustang (which surprisingly has a large amount of storage space), but I managed to fit them all in my car!

 

 

I made my dropoff at one of my local Chicago area warehouses, and while there I met two former Marines who were busy making preparations for the toy distribution!  They were really great guys to talk to, and I ended up staying around for about an hour just talking with both of them!  The most exciting thing about my dropoff though – until I brought my carload of LEGO to this site, they had NO LEGO products to give to kids!  It made me so happy to know that a lot of kids were going to be able to get LEGO sets for the holidays, that otherwise would not have!  I think Frank (one of the two former Marines) said it best – his favorite part of working for Toys for Tots is on Christmas morning when he see’s his grandkids opening presents, and he knows that there are thousands of kids across our area who at that moment are experiencing the same joy and excitement because of what we do.

 

Those kids holiday celebrations were possible because of you, so Thank You!  Whether you bought a creation, sold a creation, managed Creations for Charity behind the scenes, were another Area Coordinator, or just shared the Creations for Charity Event with your friends and family – thank you for making this a success!

 

I am already excited for what 2013 will bring for Creations for Charity!

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24 Dec

Creations for Charity Wrapup – Josh from Chicago

Posted in Uncategorized on 24.12.11 by

I would like to start by saying – thank you to everyone who donated a creation to this event, as well as to those people who bought creations.  It is our love for this hobby that brings us all together, and has allowed us to share our favorite toys with those less privileged.

My experiences with Creations for Charity really began last year through selling my custom Minifigure creations.  Shortly after the conclusion of last years event, Nannan and I started having discussions in which he eventually asked me to join the Creations for Charity staff as an area distributor for the Chicago area.  I instantly knew that I wanted to help at the next level, and this year was wonderful! With that said – I LOVED being able to join in this years distribution process – purchasing LEGO on sale, and enjoying seeing the surprise and joy at the Toys for Tots dropoff point – when they were expecting a few LEGO sets, and received a LOT of LEGO sets!  I only wish I could see the eyes of all the children who receive the toys this christmas!

As all the area distributors were doing, I kept watching for good LEGO sales (particularly on Black Friday/Cyber Monday) in which I was able to stretch $1,125 for over $2,000 which included lots of LEGO games, as well as sets from “Stocking Stuffer” size to ultimate LEGO presents (LEGO Kingdoms Mill Village, Alien Conquest Alien Mothership, and Atlantis City of Atlantis) and everything in between for all ages (DUPLO LEGO to the larger more coveted sets).

These were dropped off at a Toys for Tots warehouse in St. Charles, Illinois (which will distribute to areas around the Chicago area).  The staff at the location were very excited for the amounts of LEGO that they were receiving, and very thankful as well!  The amount of LEGO dropped off completely filled the back of my car, as you can see in this photo:

Overall – I am amazed at the generosity of LEGO, and have been very thankful to be a part of Creations for Charity this year!  It really has been an amazing experience, and I can’t wait until tomorrow morning when kids from all over the country will be getting some amazing presents thanks to the generosity of everyone who was a part of the Creations for Charity event!  Thank you!

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