Our NMRC Conference Event went spectacular on April 17th! There were 24 Teams present, of that, we had numerous safety precautions and creative problem solving efforts put forth to make sure the COVID-19 risks were minimized and so the event could still take place and be a great time!
We left the great town of Upsala around 5am, and made the long trek North to Bemidji. Rolling in around 8am after stopping to get a breakfast, we were directed towards our pit areas, and welcomed by the Gene Haas Foundation for a Photo Opportunity! We met with Hope Riska, who represented the Gene Haas Foundation, and took a quick photo out front by the NMRC Trailer. Between this year and last year, we were awarded $6,500 in all! A surprising and welcoming amount for our team! Of that some of the funding will go towards scholarships for students going into the Machining fields!
Later we began competition, and had a short downtime due to making sure everyone was able to connect to the fields properly (First time doing so with a new system). Following The Matches came by quickly and efficiently! Our team did well, our Autonomous program was working great, and our climber (at the end) finally began to work properly! Our new driver this year, Nick, had been working hard during the season to develop enough skill of moving in the way, and playing a strong Defensive game! it was enough so, that we were selected by the Number one seed in Finals for that purpose!
Overall, We progressed through the Final brackets all the way to the end, and ultimately took home the 2nd place alliance trophy. We had a few mishaps on our side, where our Climber rope go wrapped around a bolt and wouldn’t allow us to deploy fully, and another time our robot ended up getting bashed around a bit too hard, and found our climber deployed too soon. That deploy ended up costing us foul points which hurt our end game total.
We also got to take some time and chat with Twitch Streamer and FIRST Robotics Enthusiast, Tyler Olds from FIRST Updates Now (FUN). He even did an interview segment with our team allowing us to explore and share our robot’s capabilities, how we designed it and came up with our ideas. Long and short, we had a great time! The kids did extremely well given the circumstances of limitations with COVID-19, and we are proud and thankful to be a part of the Northern Minnesota Robotics Conference!