For me, a highlight of every holiday season is the arrival of the LEGO® Winter Village set. Over the years, we have seen a delightful village and its shops, a market, train and gone off site to the North Pole, to visit Santa’s Work Shop, and the Elves Club House. And a gingerbread house.
This year’s set, Santa’s Visit, has been officially announced and returns to the village, where we have a new home being visited by Santa. The set has 1445 pices and will cost €89.99 / $USD99.99 / £79.99 /$AUD159.99 / $CAD139.99. It will be released through LEGO retail channels on October 1st 2021.
Today we continue our our exploration of LEGO® Christmas Celebrations, as a tribute to the 20th anniversary of LEGO Advent Calendars, and will follow it up with a quick visit to today’s entry for the LEGO Friends calendar.
Today’s entry comes from extremely recent history: today in fact! I visited the shop attached to the local LEGOLAND Discovery Centre (Chadstone Shopping Centre in Melbourne), and found this great little collection of minifigures hanging on the shelf, with an asking price of $19.99AUD.
We have Santa, Mrs Claus and a red hatted elf. I could not help but think that they remind me of the figures from the Creator Expert Winter Village set “Santa’s Workshop”10245 from 2014. There are, however, some subtle differences. Are they enough to justify the purchase?
As you can see, the packet is quite generic. What you see above is what you get: there is no back printing. Which is a shame, as the City Santa from the 2017 and 2018 Advent Calendars has a dual printed torso, with a candy cane tucked in under the belt.
Let’s compare our new figures: with those from Santa’s Workshop.
Let’s start with Mrs Claus. The older version has a red dress, while the newer version has a dark green dress. The details on the skirt elements are the same, although the colouring is slightly different on the new torso. Our new Mrs Claus has grey hair, rather than white, with a bun. She is also carrying a pie element, introduced with one of the collectable minifigure clowns, rather than the red sack element.
On the left is the old Santa, on the right the new one. Superfically, they look pretty similar. The torso’s are identical to the one from the 2016 City Advent calendar. Remove the hat and beard however, and we see that the heads are subtly different. Our new version features greying eye brows and reading glasses. How else can he check his list of who has been naughty or nice? This appears to be a new combination, with this head only otherwise appearing in the Fun at the Beach people pack 60153, the 2017 City Advent Calendar, and attached to some European books.
On the right we have our new elf: he wears the same tunic as the Collectable minifigure Holiday Elf, from Series 11, but has red legs and a red hat. I believe this is the first time this ear/hat element has been seen in red.
They all feel, in part like they have come to perform holiday relief work, to allow Santa, Mrs Claus and the Elves a chance to have a well earned break. I hope they wait until after Christmas to take it!
These are a great selection of holiday themed minifigures, and the new elements are an unexpected bonus. What do you think? Perhaps you will be able to pick them up at your local LEGO Brand retail store, or a LEGOLAND park/discovery centre somewhere around the world. If you do, I’d love to see how you use them…
Catching up with our Friends:
Let’s open up door number 5 after the break, and see where it takes us…
For the last 23 days we have been putting models together and pulling them apart. Some have been related to Christmas, some to winter, and some totally out of left field.
I have really enjoyed it, but there is one conspicuous element in this set which I have not seen before, and not yet used: the Ehite Croissant. I expect that now that it is Christmas Eve, all will be revealed!