I had the pleasure of visiting the double event in Duluth, MN over the weekend. The Duluth Entertainment Convention Center hosted two simultaneous Regionals under one roof – Lake Superior & Northern Lights Regionals – and it was fantastic. These events were exactly what folks like to see – exciting gameplay, passionate, friendly and hard-working teams, committed volunteers and engaged sponsors, with everything running on schedule. Also, having had the honor of shaking hands and high-fiving awards winners on the field at Northern Lights, I’m pretty sure I saw at least a few lives changed close-up. That’s what I call a great weekend!
To top things off in Duluth, we tried a little experiment. For the first time ever in FRC, we had a one-match only ‘exhibition’ game featuring the two winning alliances from a double event. And what an exhibition it was! It evolved into the highest combined scoring match of the weekend, with a final score of 133-136 -- a single disc in the high goal making the difference. The match was not official in any way, but it sure was fun to watch.
This season, Minnesota has 180 FRC teams. To put that in perspective, Minnesota, also known by some as the ‘Hockey State’, has only 156 varsity hockey teams. The state tournament draws over 100,000 spectators every year and I hear that prime tickets are passed down from generation to generation, like family heirlooms. Imagine, with me, a time in the not-so-distant future when we will be able to say the same things about FRC…can you see it?
Finally, a special shout-out to my new friends on Team 2177, The Robettes, for teaching me how to curtsy. I don’t think I had ever tried that before. At least, that I can remember.
I’ll blog again soon.