Star Wars Miniland opens at Legoland California

Last Thursday, Legoland California opened up their Star Wars area in Miniland with some big fanfare. The official ribbon cutting was done by Princess Leia herself, Carrie Fisher, and Carson Weiner, a young Star Wars fan representing the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Also on hand for the celebration were James Arnold Taylor and Catherine Taber of Star Wars: The Clone Wars and about 60 costumed members of the 501st Legion and Rebel Legion. Other VIPs included skateboarding legend Tony Hawk and “Wait, I was in Star Trek not Star Wars” Christian Slater and Dancing with the Stars‘ Brooke Burke.

With Shawn Crosby in his role as Obi-Shawn as emcee and with pyrotechnics going off, Jedi, Imperials, Rebels, Ewoks and bounty hunters helped to unveil each of the seven Star Wars themed dioramas. Each of the six Star Wars films as well as The Clone Wars has its own diorama, showcasing memorable planetary scenes, including some animatronic action and sound effects.

After the ribbon cutting, the VIPs and media mixed with the troopers for some fun photo ops among the dioramas, which are constructed from 1.5 million bricks. After the park’s main opening, the general public also got a chance to hang with Cad Bane, Rebel pilots and Imperial troops in the Star Wars miniland and around the park. In addition to the dioramas, Legoland also opened the nearby outdoor “Empire Emporium” specializing in LEGO Star Wars merchandise, and brought out the large “The Empire Strikes Back” mural, first seen and assembled at Star Wars Celebration V. Also for the occasion, The Sand Guys, a Travel Channel team of sandcastle sculptors constructed a sand diorama of LEGO Star Wars near the park entrance.

The dioramas include:

No word on when the Alderaan diorama will be installed, but I’m sure it will include a large pile of disassembled LEGO bricks scattered across the Carlsbad theme park.

Check out more of my photos of the opening day festivities and the Star Wars area dioramas. Want more photos and video of the fun? has some great coverage, and Geek with Curves also got some good photos in her flickr album.

4 Replies to “Star Wars Miniland opens at Legoland California”

  1. Great videos… my daughter kept wanting to watch them over and over. But what does the park do when it rains? Do they just let it all get wet?

  2. The Legos that are in the outdoor miniland models just get wet! – they do use a glue to hold the bricks together and also some sort of UV coating to prevent fading, but over time the models do fade in the sunlight. A friend of mine who works there mentioned that eventually they will replace faded models – as i was looking around mini-land, some of the buildings in the San Francisco diorama were looking pretty faded – they might swap out a building at a time.

    while i was there, i watched a snail that got stuck on one of the moving Hoth turrets in the morning, and later in the day, some seagulls came and used one of the skyscrapers in the San Francisco miniland as a hangout. I’d imagine that what looks like soft sand is actually sculpted and hard, and hopefully has enough of an angle for drainage or soaking in – i’d hate to see the trenches at Hoth filled up with water!

    The Falcon cockpit has no interior, and is open, so possibly a mouse or lizard could crawl inside the Falcon, and get to where the wiring for the hyperdrive lights and sound effects are :/

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