2009 Boston Regional

Team 701 is “totally stoked” to be heading way out east this year. We have just reserved some airline tickets for the team and plan to arrive late Tuesday, leaving the Wednesday before the competition wide open to see the sights and such.

Anyone have advice of what our team should do in Boston on that Wednesday??

Looking forward to the competition!!

Search ChiefDelphi and you’ll find info from past years. I found this thread at the bottom of this thread. I’m sure there are others. Here are some random places –

Museum of Science – Though last year FIRST splurged and got us all in for free on the Friday evening. But a couple of hours (plus everyone jamming the food court) is never enough for the MOS. IMAX and planetarium is extra. Make sure you see the Van de Graaff generator demonstration! Boom! Pow!

New England Aquarium – I haven’t been there in a while, but the center tank is great to watch, and the penguins too! Also has an IMAX

MIT Museum – Never been there but hey, it is MIT.

Faneuil Hall Marketplace is one large food court – or used to be. I haven’t been in there for years.

A little out of the way but unusual is the USS Constitution. There is a “water taxi” that gets over that way across the harbor. (I think it’s part of the MBTA, so see their website.)

For Boston itself, if is a walkable city, and a lot of historic places that are on, um, I forget what it’s called. A red brick “historic tour” line that winds thru town. There is (or was) a tour that starts at the Boston Commons for the history. I’ll let someone more knowledgeable pipe up.

Depending where you are staying, the MBTA, the local subway system (known as “the T”) goes to all above. Four subway lines (red, orange, blue subway cars, and the green trolley lines). There are bus lines and commuter trains too, but for the downtown the subway – or walking! – are better.

And for the record-- the event is at BU’s Agganis Arena. There is parking, but the “B Line” of the Green Line trolley stops right out front. McDonalds is still gone (still a chance for another fast food to go in), but there are other places all up and down Comm. (short for Commonwealth) Ave to eat.

Oh, I almost forgot. The 2008 Game Hint location! 42.348805, -71.076072, 342.242026. It’s on the Green Line – see the thread for details.

The Constitution is not out of the way. The Freedom Trail actually takes you right to that area as the Bunker Hill Memorial is right behind it. Can you elaborate on what you actually want to do? I’ve been literally everywhere one could possibly be on foot.

Ah, The Freedom Trail – I forgot the name. And you can walk to the USS Constitution. A very nice walk (~1.5 mile) if it isn’t too hot or too snowy. I meant it’s not right downtown. (The last time I went was a very hot summer day, not a very good time to walk the grandparents around Boston and to the Constitution – and not likely there will be a heatwave the beginning of March*.)

*But worst things have happened in Boston when it gets hot in the winter.

If there are any seniors who are interested in going to college in Boston (seeing as there are so many!) Wednesday would be a good chance for them to see these universities. I know particularly Northeastern has “Engineering Wednesdays” for interested students.

The Museum of Science is Fantastic, but Faneuil Hall is also fun/historic. If the weather’s nice, a boston Duck Tour really gives a great scope of things in ~1 hour.

PS I am SO STOKED for the boston regional this year :slight_smile:

Thanks Kim! I’m looking at Northeastern and I’ll definitely try to come check it out before the regional. That’s right folks, I’m coming to my very first Boston Regional! Can’t wait :slight_smile: I’ve heard it’s an awesome time.

Boston is a great time. Our team has gone every year we have been around, and it is a blast.
I know I’m looking forward to it!

I’m currently a freshman at Northeastern University one of the classes I’m taking is Boston History. We’ve done 4 walking tours this year through Boston and this is what I would recommend.

Definitely Head over to Fanuiel Hall and the Quincy Markets. The best T stop to use to get there would be Government Center.

After that walk over to the north end and walk down Hanover st. Mike’s Pastries is an amazing pastries shop, excellent cannolis. There are numerous other pastries and eateries also located on Hanover st. Also the Improve Asylum is an extremely funny show.

If shopping is more your interest then Newbury St. is where you want to go. Many shops to choose from.

The Boston Common and the Public Garden are both nice places to walk through and relax.

Hope that this information helps.

While I don’t have any places to add …

I’d like to remind you that, while Boston is a great city to walk around in, Boston can also get very cold in early March and that you will need to be prepared for the cold.

Just in time, today’s Boston Globe article on Freedom Trail tours, with “Captain Daniel Malcolm - revolutionary, patriot, privateer” giving a tour to some fifth graders:

“Are you for Obama or McCain?”
“I can’t vote,” was Malcolm’s gruff dismissal of the inquisitive lad. “I’m dead.”
The walking tours certainly give you better history than a book.

Daniel is very correct: watch the Boston weather before you fly in. It can get from too warm to too cold in less than a day. Remember the April Fools Day snowstorm? Wasn’t the next day in the 50s? (Still no school – no one could shovel out!)

northeastern university…check it out :wink:

I’ll be there (at least on Saturday if not Friday, too) and so will Jack in the Hat. Be sure to stop us and say hi if it’s your first time in Boston!


I was just contacted by the Hyatt Regency in Cambridge Mass, trying to recruit our team to stay at their location. I dont know where they are getting the info from, as we arent even able to attend the Boston Regional, but we had an absolutely HORRIBLE experience there two years in a row, and I HIGHLY encourage teams to BEWARE of this hotel. I am displaying his email (which was also preceeded by a phone call, not sure who is distributing TIMS info to them, but they shouldnt have team captain info!), as well as the letter I wrote to them two years ago, which was given no attention or response at all.

** High Priority **

Good Afternoon Kim,
Just left a message, and wanted to introduce myself as the new contact here at the Hyatt Regency Cambridge, MA for overnight accomodations for the Rage Robotics for March 4-7, 2009. Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions. We have a fantastic incentive $119.00 singled/double rate for these dates! If you are interested in holding rooms and moving forward, please let me know. Rates are subject to change after November 24, 2008.

Warm Regards,
Mike J. Westfield

Mike Westfield
Sales Manager
Hyatt Regency Cambridge
575 Memorial Drive
Cambridge, MA 02139
p: 617-441-6494
f: 617-441-6489

I just wanted teams to be aware of the issues with this Hotel, and encourage them to find other places to stay…

Book with the Raddison or ANY other place in town… they are HORRIBLE!!!

HyattLetter.doc (44.5 KB)

HyattLetter.doc (44.5 KB)

Team leaders going to Boston, please read her attachment.

To be fair Kim, the pizza box did have two FREE slices of pizza next to the feces.

Don’t all FIRSTers want free pizza?

The first four bullet points could be chalked up to bad luck - listing them first lures the reader into a false sense of righteousness (Of course we were renovating, we do that once a year - what is your problem?) and may cause people to skip over the last two. However, listing them after the pizza would completely rob them of meaning by contrast. As point of caution, it could be that a non-FIRST team was also staying with you in the Hyatt, causing this catastrophe.

Thanks for the heads up. I wish I had a team traveling to Boston so we could boycott them as well.

For those that attended the Boston Regional last year you will know that the Blue Man Group preformed, which was amazing, if you get a chance you should go see their full show at the Charles Play House, right in downtown Boston, it was truly an amazing show. If you are in the North End and want some amazing pizza I would say Pizzeria Regina is the place to be, you WILL wait in line, but it’s worth it.

Eric, I definitely agree that it could have been bad timing/bad luck (and hopefully NOT a FIRST team), and to be honest, I have worked in the service industry and I give all establishments the understanding that they cannot always be responsible for every thing that happens… but if they want me to come back, I want them to at least acknowledge and perhaps try and make up for any issues… they did nothing. When I let the front desk know about the bathroom, they didnt seem to care, and certainly didnt get it clean in the next hour, when I talked to the staff after our stay, they did nothing to try and compensate us, and when I contacted Hyatt’s main corporate office, they never responded or acknowledged our issues. After two years in a row of issues with them, we will never stay there again, and if we can help it, never stay in another Hyatt again.

P.S. This is JUST a warning about the paticular hotel. We absolutely LOVED the Boston Regional the two years we went… and in my opinion its one of the best regionals out there!! The Committee does a great job pulling in everything from colleges to free food to great entertainment. We loved the event, the teams there, the high profile judges and everything about it… definitely go if you get the chance… just dont stay at the Hyatt!! lol :slight_smile:

I remember staying at that hotel and I didn’t have a problem with them at all. Then again they also had a lot more money to loose if they were inept because it was for a conference.

Has anyone gotten their volunteer assignments for Boston yet? I got one for CT about a month ago, so I was just wondering. (I know that the regional volunteer coordinators are probably super busy, so I’m not trying to be whiny or anything. They’re awesome, and they deserve great thanks for everything they do!)

Dear Doug,

Congratulations on picking an awesome Regional. We are from CT and this will be our second Regional in Boston. We loved it last year. There is so much to do. I read many of the suggestions from other people and agree with them. Our students love Faneuil Hall Marketplace. We do not have subways near where we live, so our students love taking the subway over to Faneuil Hall. I have heard similar complaints about the Hyatt. We stay in a smaller quieter hotel in Cambridge. Where are you planning to stay?

We are planning to go up on Wed. Some of our students use the day to visit colleges and the Duck Tour is a great overview. I lived in Boston for 3 years and loved it. If you have time and the weather cooperates, walk the Freedom Trail. It is a red line painted down the sidewalk that takes you past so many historical places in Boston. Boston is a very compact and walkable city.

Feel free to contact us, if you have any more questions.

Team 1099 Co-Founder and Co-Advisor for FRC Team 1099 in Brookfield, CT

I’m going to second these. I’ve been to all of them recently, some more than once (Faneuil Hall is amazing, and so is the Museum of Science.) Also, if you want to explore the city and it’s history, consider going on a Duck Tour.