March 1, 2015

2015 FRC Robotics Northern Lights Regional in Duluth, Minnesota

2015 FRC Robotics Northern Lights Regional in Duluth
Todd Swank's Diary Entry for March 1, 2015

At work this week, 5 of us suddenly discovered we all wore the same outfit.  And no, it wasn't planned!

On Friday, I drove up to Duluth to join my family at a robot tournament.  I always get tempted to climb up this thing when I'm there, but it's dang cold outside.

We were there to cheer on the Prior Lake High School robotics team, KING TeC, as they competed in the Northern Lights FRC regional tournament.  This year's game is called Recycle Rush and this is how it's played:

The game leaves a pretty messy playing field after each match!

We really like to see our boys pretending like they like each other at events like these.  It doesn't happen that often.

The kids spend a lot of time in the stands, singing songs, doing cheers and generally rooting on their team as well as other teams.   We parents try to do the same.  Some parents do it much better than others.  I'm one of the others.

It was exactly 2 weeks to the day that Luke had went through his pacemaker surgery, so we were a little nervous when we came back from lunch and discovered he was volunteering to help with the tournament by carrying flags back and forth to the field.  He did this for about 3 and a half hours straight.

It might not seem like a big accomplishment to carry flags back and forth, but we were really proud of him.  

Going to these tournaments is a great experience for the kids.  They get to stay in hotels for 3 nights with no parental supervision and get to eat out at nice restaurants with their friends every meal.  I'm surprised we can get them to come home when it's all over.

We also had the treat of going and spending some quality adult time with other team parents.  These are some fun and interesting folks to hang out with.

I came to discover that Dave isn't really keen on getting his picture taken.

We didn't stay out too late, but we did have the chance to engage in some great talks with a lot of fun people.

The next day, our good friends, Jen and Dan Walters, arrived.  Since it was so cold outside, Dan and the ladies stuck together pretty closely as we walked to the restaurant.

The team did very well in the tournament making it to the quarter finals and winning the Industrial Design award.  Coach Volm was so excited he could hardly contain himself.

KING TeC 2169.  This is a great team!

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