Legoland Discovery Center

by Jessica on May 18, 2011

The rumor of the opening of Legoland Discovery Center in our little corner of the world has been percolating for the past two years. The center was scheduled to open last year but the opening was delayed. Finally, this spring the center was open for business.

I have been actively keeping this fact a secret from my band of Legomaniacs for what seems like an eternity. Jockeying for cool mom points, I had planned for us to spend the day as a reward for the end of the school year. But, I also wanted to save myself from the relentless begging that would ensue if they were aware of the existence of Legoland. I have been doing some pretty creative fact hiding, including one incidence of me gesticulating wildly to draw attention away from a billboard. What a mom will do!

The morning of our big trip found three boys eagerly dressed in their Lego T-shirts and ready to go before my alarm had even sounded. We stepped through the giant brick doors and beheld the great Legoland, awash with every color of the rainbow. Let me just tip my hat to the map illustrator for taking a fairly compact space and making it appear huge on the map. The size of the center might have been underwhelming, but each section packed a mighty punch. The relatively small size allowed the kids to roam fairly freely, while still allowing me to keep an eye on them and their bright yellow Lego shirts.

Time Out for Tips: If you are traveling through DFW International Airport and have a layover, you can ride the shuttle from the airport to Legoland Discovery Center. The center lends itself to a short two hour visit or a longer visit, as time allows.

Lego Factory
The tour begins in the Lego Factory where kids join Professor Brick a Brack in learning about the Lego making process. Pssst….this is not an actual factory, but an animated showcase of the brick making process. Fortunately, the kids didn’t seem to notice. A souvenir block is given to each ticketholder as you exit the factory.

Kingdom Quest
The exit of the Lego Factory leads directly into the Kingdom Quest, an interactive moving ride where participants use laser guns to zap skeletons and trolls and rescue the princess. Points are awarded for zapping each bad guy and tallied in your car. Ask the ride attendant about the hidden characters that offer bonus points.

Lego City PlayZone
A fireman themed, multi-story playground where kids can climb, slide, and build to their hearts content. This is a great place to blow off some steam as you wait for the next showing in the4-D theatre. Throwing the foam bricks is the only fun not allowed, I learned as my three kids led an all out brick tossing war. I tried to pretend like I didn’t know any of them, but one of the little turkeys ratted me out by calling me mom. Figures.

Lego Studios 4D Theatre
Three shows on a rotating schedule show throughout the day. Check the screen outside the theatre for the upcoming movies and show times. Inside the theatre, 3-D glasses bring the stories to life along with real life snow storms, lightening, and water showers. Each show is worth at least one viewing, although we checked out each one twice and couldn’t choose a favorite. If the center is not crowded, theatre attendants will allow you to remain in your seats to watch each feature back to back.

Miniland
1.5 million legos were artfully designed into a delightful replica of the major attractions of DFW. The kids enjoyed locating and naming the places they have visited in our hometown. Interactive buttons allow kids to control the automated parts of the exhibit. A kid powered camera highlights the details of the exhibit and encourages kids to find and seek.

Duplo Village
A preschool sized playground just for the little guys. Ages five and under can climb and play in the duplo house or build to their delight in the sea of duplo blocks. The biggest challenge was keeping my little one in the little kid’s area. Could someone convince him that he is not as big as his brothers?

Lego Girl’s Princess Parlor
I’m sure that there is lots of fun to be had in Lego girl land. The karaoke stage looked especially fun. Due to the pinkety-pink-pinkiness of this section of the park, we kept as far away as possible. Not only do my boys think girls have cooties, they think that anything that has to do with girls has cooties, as well. For my money, we can just keep it that way for a few more years.

Lego Racers Build and Test Zone
Build a race car and time it against other racers on the speed test track. Surprisingly, this section of the center provided the longest entertainment for my guys. They were intent on building and tweaking their race cars to get the best times. Once they had perfected their designs, they moved on to the stunt track to participate in thrills and destruction to their delight.

Time Out for Tips: A cafe is available inside Legoland, but they have a limited selection of snacks and prepackaged lunch foods.  Take advantage of the many options available in the mall and then return for more lego fun.

Earthquake Zone
Kids can build a tower and test it against the rumbling platform to determine structural integrity. Arguably, the biggest thrill is building the tower just high enough to shake the life out of it until if falls. Egged on my biggest child (also known as my husband), my kids decided to see if they could build the tallest tower on record. Their structure was remarkably sound and drew quite a crowd as they turned up the dial to shake the platform. At the highest level the top of the tower finally gave way, but not before the employees agreed it was the tallest tower they had seen yet, and asked for the boys to share their building secrets.

Merlin’s Apprentice
Get ready to pedal and pedal some more to power your ship to the sky and conjure up Merlin’s spell. This ride has a 36 inch height requirement and guarantees that your legs will be sore when you are finished.

We spent over six hours at the Lego Discovery Center, proving that tiny can be mighty for Lego lovers. For future reference, just in case someday I need photographic proof of my undying dedication and sacrifice to my children, the night before our visit, I tripped on the highchair and broke my toe. Yep, six hours on my feet at a theme park. Don’t ever try to say I don’t love you, kids.

{ 4 comments }

Katie May 18, 2011 at 3:33 pm

This looks awesome and is just a few minutes from my mom's house. You can bet we will be trying to squeeze this into our summer visit to the metroplex! Thanks for sharing!

Katrina May 18, 2011 at 3:47 pm

Hi! Thanks for visiting my blog and for leaving such a nice comment. I'm so glad that our story of our daughter's brain injury helped inspire you today! You don't know how good that comment makes me feel. I try to look for the good that came with her injury. At times it's very, very hard to find "good" in any of it, but you know what? There is some! It's all a matter of perspective, as they say. One of the good things is being able to help others through what we've been through.

I'm a new follower of your blog :)

Katrina @ They All Call Me Mom

Kim-A Creative Spirit May 18, 2011 at 4:18 pm

MY 24 year old son and my 5 year old grandson would be in LEGO heaven

Veronika May 19, 2011 at 12:41 pm

This place looks like so much fun! :)

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