Saturday, September 14, 2019

2nd Qualifier Registration Opens Tomorrow

THANK YOU FOR AN AMAZING SKYSTONE KICKOFF!!
Thanks to everyone who made the Arizona Kickoff last weekend such an amazing success! Special shout out to the workshop presenters and a very special thanks to the Arizona Droid Builders and the 501st Garrison for making Kickoff OUT OF THIS WORLD! Scroll down to see some pictures from Kickoff (but don't forget to read the important information in this blog too!) 


We will be posting the workshop presentations to the right as they become available. 

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion
This is an important topic for FIRST Teams. Our teams and organization all become stronger as they become more inclusive to all. 

Please take some time to watch the video below. Click here to find out more information about ED&I training for coaches and teams. 


2nd Qualifier Registration Opens Sunday September 15 at 8 am
Teams may register for their 2nd qualifier starting tomorrow at 8 am. AZ teams may also register for NM events by clicking here and NM teams may register for events in AZ. 

Please ONLY register for a 2nd event at this time. Registration for a 3rd event will open on September 29. 

Grant Information
The Arconic Grant deadline (for teams in Tucson or Chandler areas) has been extended to September 20. 

FIRST Rookie Grants are still available! If your school or one in your district is looking to expand opportunities in FTC, please apply ASAP. 

Dave and Christine have two rookie grants to give to deserving teams. If you're a rookie team that HAS NOT received a rookie grant, please contact Dave and Christine directly for more information.
  
 
 
  
 
 
 

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

SKYSTONE Kickoff is HERE at LAST!!!

ONLY 3 DAYS UNTIL THE 2019/2020 SKYSTONE KICKOFF!!!
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UPDATED: Tournament Dates for Arizona & New Mexico
Queen Creek Qualifier - January 18, 2020
Socorro, NM Qualifier - December 7, 2019
Sandia Park, NM Qualifier - January 11, 2020
New Mexico Championship - Feb 28 & 29 OR March 6 & 7, 2020 in Albuquerque

Please watch the tournament capacities to the right - several events are already half full. Teams may sign up for ONE event only until September 15, when 2nd event registration opens. 

2019 Arizona FIRST Tech Challenge Kickoff
7:45 am:   Doors open to teams
8:30 am:   Season information & AZ Kickoff
9:00 am:   SKYSTONE game reveal
9:15 am:   Game key points
9:30 am:   Time for field measurements
10:00 am: Team member meet & greet; coaches best practices
11:30 am: Lunch break on your own
12:30 pm: Workshops begin
3:40 pm:   Workshops finish

Know any potential rookie teams for any FIRST program? Be sure to get them to Kickoff for the 11:45 "So you want to start a FIRST Team" workshop! All interested teachers, parents, administrators, and community members are welcome to attend the Kickoff, including the game reveal and workshops. 

Food options in the Memorial Union:
(Lunch will not be provided at kickoff) 
Engrained Cafe, Pitchforks, Burger King, Chick-fil-A, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Devils' Greens, Jamba Juice, Bento Sushi, Qdoba, Pei Wei, Subway, Starbucks, Rosie's at the MU and the MU P.O.D convenience market.

Arizona Kickoff Location Information
The Arizona Kickoff is at the ASU Tempe Memorial Union (1290 S. Normal Ave. Tempe, AZ 85287). Parking is available at the Apache Parking Structure located at 1112 S. Normal Ave. The Apache parking lot should have the gates open, which means you will not need to pay for parking. If you are bringing an activity bus, you may park along the perimeter road of the Gammage parking lot. No payment is required for buses parked along this road. If you park in the Gammage visitor parking lot, you will need to pay at the kiosk or via Parkmobile app. See a campus map for Kickoff location. 

New Mexico Kickoff Information
The New Mexico Kickoff will be held at the Nex+Gen Academy (5325 Montgomery Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87109). CLICK HERE for more information on the New Mexico Kickoff.

YOUR COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF CHECKLIST:
  1. Register with FIRST - FTC Teams registered prior to Sept. 4 will be entered to win robot kits or a Skystone field!
  2. RSVP for Kickoff - so many amazing workshops, reuniting with friends, surprises from the Affiliate Partners...and oh yeah, the SKYSTONE GAME!
  3. AZ Teams - Register for your 1st Qualifying Tournament! Some are already half full, don't wait or you may not get your first choice. Click here to register for your 1st event. 2nd Event Registration begins on September 15.
  4. Check out all the amazing workshops we're offering and make a plan with your team to get to as many as you can! (This is the final schedule and it's amazing!!!)
  5. Apply for Grants - See the links to the right for Rookie Grants, Arcona grants (for teams in Chandler/Tucson areas) and APS/Phoenix Suns Mini STEM Grants. 
  6. Get in the FIRST RISE spirit - get on social media and share how your team's excitement using #FIRSTRISE, #SKYSTONE, #FORCEFORCHANGE 
SEE YOU AT KICKOFF!!!

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Preliminary AZ Kickoff Schedule

Image result for waiting for ftc kickoff memes
ONLY 9 DAYS UNTIL THE SKYSTONE KICKOFF!!!

YOUR COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF CHECKLIST:
  1. Register with FIRST - FTC Teams registered prior to Sept. 4 will be entered to win robot kits or a Skystone field!
  2. RSVP for Kickoff - so many amazing workshops, reuniting with friends, surprises from the Affiliate Partners...and oh yeah, the SKYSTONE GAME!
  3. AZ Teams - Register for your 1st Qualifying Tournament! Some are already half full, don't wait or you may not get your first choice. Click here to register for your 1st event. 2nd Event Registration begins on September 15.
  4. Check out all the amazing workshops we're offering and make a plan with your team to get to as many as you can! (This schedule is tentative, and will be finalized by next week.) 
  5. Apply for Grants - See the links to the right for Rookie Grants, Arcona grants (for teams in Chandler/Tucson areas) and APS/Phoenix Suns Mini STEM Grants. 
  6. Get in the FIRST RISE spirit - get on social media and share how your team's excitement using #FIRSTRISE, #SKYSTONE, #FORCEFORCHANGE
SEE YOU AT KICKOFF!!!

Monday, August 19, 2019

Qualifying Tournament Registration Now Open

Arizona Teams - Register Now for your 1st SKYSTONE Qualifying Tournament!

Arizona Teams may now register for their 1st SKYSTONE Qualifying Tournament. Click the links below to sign up for your event. Our website is in the process of being updated, and will be live with registration information soon. 

Teams may only register for ONE event at this time. 

Registration for a 2nd event will open on September 15. 


Your team will receive a confirmation email within 3 days of receiving your registration. Do not send any money at this time. Invoices will be sent that reflect the cost of your whole season the week of October 13. If your team needs to begin generating a PO, a cost estimate worksheet is available under Quick Links. 

REGISTRATION LINKS:

SEE YOU ALL AT KICKOFF SEPTEMBER 7!
CLICK HERE TO RSVP FOR KICKOFF

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Thursday, August 15, 2019

RSVP for the Arizona Kickoff + Qualifying Tournament Information

Are you READY for KICKOFF??
The 2019/2020 SKYSTONE game will be revealed in only 22 Days!!


Arizona Kickoff 2019
The Kickoff for the Skystone season in Arizona will be at the Arizona State University Memorial Union on Saturday, September 7, 2019. A basic schedule is below. A more detailed schedule of workshops is coming soon.

7:45 am: Doors open to teams
8:30 am: Season welcome
9:00 am: Game Reveal
9:30 am: Game deep dive
10:15 am: Coaches best practices, team meet & greet
11:45 am: Lunch on your own
12:30 - 4:00 pm: Workshops for team members and coaches

Remember to register your team with FIRST before September 4 to be eligible to win robot kits or a game field as part of the Kickoff Sweepstakes! Winners will be announced at Kickoff. 

Rookie Team Workshop: This year, the FIRST partners are offering a workshop at Kickoff for teachers, principals, administrators, parents, community partners and potential coaches interested in starting a team at any level. Anyone interested in starting a team is invited to join us for the game reveal and best practices session, with a the "So you think you want to start a FIRST team" workshop during the lunch break. If you're in contact with any school or organization interested in starting a team that wants to learn more, please invite them to attend kickoff and pass along their contact information to Christine, Dave, or Patti. 

Qualifying Tournament Information
Registration for Arizona Qualifying Tournaments will open on Monday, August 12 at 7:45 am. Please carefully read the information about registration dates, event cost, and how the tournaments will be structured now that New Mexico has their own Championship. 

The information can be found HERE and under the Quick Links to the right. 

Capacities for the qualifiers will be updated on a daily basis and can be seen to the right.

Have you heard?? New Mexico is their own independent FIRST Tech Challenge season now! Click the New Mexico Welcome under quick links to the right to read a message from Jim Jackson, New Mexico Affiliate Partner. 

Grants Available for Teams in the Chandler and Tucson Areas
Arconic is once again offering grants to teams within 25 miles of their Chandler and Tucson locations. Grants are $1000 for rookie teams and $500 for veteran teams. For more information, click the link to the right. 

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Kickoff Sweepstakes!

ONLY ONE MONTH UNTIL THE KICKOFF OF THE SKYSTONE SEASON!!! 
ARE YOU READY???

Guess what?!?!!? In honor of Kickoff happening in just one month, FIRST Tech Challenge is launching a sweepstakes! 

All teams that register before September 4th are eligible to win a REV Robotics competition kit, a TETRIXrobotics competition kit, or a AndyMark, Inc. full game field set! So register your FIRST Tech Challenge team ASAP and tell all your friends to too! Find out more here! 

Coming Next Week: 
Information for teams on qualifying tournament registration plus a list of events! 

Qualifying Tournament Registration opens August 19 so don't wait to register your team with FIRST. Be sure to also read the blog from July 11 for more information on what you can do to be ready for Kickoff. 

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Forget Winter...Kickoff is Coming!

FORGET WINTER...KICKOFF IS COMING!

IS YOUR TEAM READY FOR THE 2019/2020 SKYSTONE SEASON?

With less than two months to go until Kickoff, there's lots of things your team can do to get ready for the new season! Check out our pre-season checklist to make sure your team is competition ready:
  1. Complete the team registration process with FIRST by logging in to www.firstinspires.org. 
  2. Pay your team registration fee to FIRST. 
  3. Get two adults to pass the Youth Protection Screening. 
  4. Read Game Manual Part 1 (just released July 11!)
  5. Recruit rookie teams, and invite them to apply for the Rookie Grants
  6. Arrange transportation to Kickoff at ASU for September 7 (or Nex+Gen Academy for our friends in NM)
  7. Start fundraising for the new season
  8. Start recruiting new team members
  9. Start looking at dates your team would like to compete in qualifiers - we expect qualifier registration to open by late August! Qualifiers will run November 8 to February 8 with the AZ Championship taking place on February 22. 
  10. Start your Purchase orders for parts, transportation, and tournament registration.
***NOTE: #1-3 are REQUIRED for all teams to compete in official events. We really suggest you complete this process sooner rather than later to avoid any last minute scrambles when competition season rolls around.***