Alumnus Runs Magazine for LEGO Hobbyists

December 6, 2010
By Cherry Crayton
Joe Meno'XX (Photo by Roger Winstead '87 for NC State magazine)

Joe Meno'87 (Photo by Roger Winstead '87 for NC State magazine)

We just sent the winter issue of NC State magazine to the printer. Among the stories to look forward to is a mini profile of Joe Meno’87.

After he left his job as a graphic designer at The News & Observer, Meno went to Florida looking for work. He took a position at Walt Disney World’s LEGO Imagination Center. Though the job was short-lived, he says, it reignited his childhood passion for the plastic bricks. He attended his first LEGO event in 2001, and four years later he founded Brick Journal, a Raleigh-based magazine for LEGO hobbyists of all ages that has about 7,500 subscribers. He’s also a consultant to the LEGO Group, which makes the toys, and last spring he organized the BrickMagic 2010 Lego convention, which drew nearly 8,000 people.

And, of course, Meno just doesn’t run the magazine or consult. He’s a LEGO enthusiast, too. Check out some of his own creations with the toy plastic bricks in his Flickr account. And, after the jump, find a short Q&A with him.

Why a magazine for LEGOs?

Well, why not? I started it because I’m part of an international community for adult LEGO builders, and there wasn’t a magazine for our hobby.

Describe a LEGO display that’s blown you away.

The one that dropped my jaw completely was an aircraft carrier in Germany. It’s 15 to 20 feet long. It has an interior, decks and the lifts, and it’s designed to be transported, so it’s split up into sections. I just stared at it and thought, “How did they do that?”

What’s the favorite thing you’ve built with LEGOs?

There are two. I built a WALL-E [a robot that was the title character of a 2008 Disney/Pixar computer-animated film]. He’s motorized and actually moves around. The other thing was an iPad. Within three weeks after it debuted, I sat down and built one.

Katy Koesy

Editor’s note: View the WALL-E that Meno made here and the iPad here. Follow Meno on Twitter.

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