Attention California FRC Teams: Gauging Interest for New Offseason Event! [NEW FORM]

TL;DR: Please fill out this new and updated form (even if you filled out the last one) and help us gauge interest in a new California offseason event:

Hi everyone!

I know some of you are probably doing a double take. I did delete the last thread so I could revise the survey and repost. We’ve decided that Aerial Assist may not be the best idea for an offseason event. While fun, it does alienate a lot of teams, and we don’t want that!

Anyways, we’ve been having internal discussions about hosting an offseason event all season. Now that our season is over, we’re making some inquires about actually making this a reality.

Some of the things we’re shooting for:

  • Relaxed and laid back experiance
  • Plenty of matches per team
  • Cheap!
  • Multiple robots allowed and encouraged
  • Allow students/mentors/alumni/whatever to try out and experiment with volunteer roles
  • Cool awards
  • Focus on the teams
    Does that sound like something you or your team may be interested in? If so, please fill out our Google Form! We’d love suggestions on how to make this event great - after all, it’s for the teams.

Location is in the San Francisco Bay Area - most likely Redwood Shores/Redwood City CA.

Questions? We’d love to hear them! PM me here, post below, or send me an email (ndalporto18 [AT] dtechhs [DOT] org).

P.S.: It should go without saying that if you’re not in California, please don’t fill out the survey (if you aren’t intending on coming).

well rip teams from outside of Cali who wanted to join.

Hey, if teams want to come down from wherever we aren’t going to stop you. That’s just there because we don’t want any troll responses/hundreds of “no” responses.

Don’t forget inspectors… :slight_smile:

A new offseason in my neighborhood? Awesome! Good to get one on the peninsula, too.

I’m happy to emcee, provided it’s not one of the few weekends during offseason time I’m already committed; if you get any sign-ups from inexperienced/interested MC/GA folks, I’d gladly use the opportunity to train some.

Although I don’t think 2073 would be able to compete in such an event, you know you can always get a nice, friendly, volunteer staff from us :wink:

I think one of the biggest issues you will have with starting another off season event in Nor Cal is finding a good time to schedule it.

There are already 4 events competing for the calendar.

Typically the four are as follows:

Chezy Champs == Mid Sept.
Cal Games == Late Sept.- Early Oct.
Capital City Classic == Mid Oct. (21st-22nd at PGHS for 2017)
MadTown Throwdown == Mid. Nov.

Getting the event to not conflict with the others would push it toward late Aug. While that is not a bad time to do it, it is close enough to the starting of the school year that it makes it difficult to get teams to commit.

Sorry for the CCC plug, but those dates are locked in already.

Yep. And I’m going to be volunteering at 3/4 of those :eek:!

You forgot Beach Blitz in SoCal.

They’re listing NorCal offseason events, since for the most part Beach Blitz doesn’t compete for the same audience that the NorCal events do.

I’m in the mindset that the more offseason events there are in California the better. If we can train more volunteers, we will be moving towards expansion for the future.

While there may be a plethora of events to choose from-- if the event is affordable to teams (ie. under $300 at least) and can build up a volunteer base, I don’t see any issues. You just want to make sure you are coordinating with the other events near you about the field.

I would also reach out to teams specifically and see the kind of responses you get. I’d also like to add that organizing Beach Blitz was a very rewarding experience for me, just because teams really seemed to enjoy the event. I’d recommend making sure that if you’re doing this, it’s because you want to add to the opportunities for FIRST teams around you and that their experience is at the forefront of everything you do for it. Organizing an offseason is certainly not easy, but pays off.

Yep, that’s because I was only referring to “Nor Cal”.

Except that some of the NorCal events tend to take SoCal teams away from SoCal events if the events are on the same weekend. Yes, I am thinking of a particular event.

Just for reference, SoCal offseasons are:
Fall Classic (L.A./northern OC), late September/early October.
Beach Blitz (OC), this year, October 7 & 8
Battle at the Border (San Diego), typically mid-October

Basically, the easy way to stand out from the crowd of CA offseasons and get more teams is to NOT be in October. (Note that there have been spring offseasons–but they moved to fall very quickly.)

If teams are leaving their local area to attend other events, it may be worth considering changing the events they’re skipping out on to provide a similar experience to the ones they’re choosing to go to. If teams are choosing certain events, it says something about their tastes and preferences - something that event planners should listen to.

That is true.

It may also say something that the event in question was contacting teams from out of their local area to ask what weekend they would be interested in going to that event.

Dude just say you’re salty about Chezy Champs.

If teams are being asked what weekend is best Chezy Champs clearly isn’t trying to undermine SoCal events. They’re literally giving teams a choice of dates. If teams suggest dates that overlap with SoCal events that’s not 254’s fault.

Not the best way to put it IMO, but if CC is running a nice event (which indeed they are!) and teams want to make a 4+ hour trip, I’m not going to stop them.

California as far as I know has never really had a true summer offseason event (aside from almost Chezy Champs 2014). This might be because it’s harder to get funding for and to travel, etc. during the summer than it is during the school year, but it’d be interesting to see an August event rather than these Sept/Oct/Nov events we have currently.

On another note, here’s an idea for “Cheap” (AKA, how to make it cheaper for teams).

Teams providing a critical volunteer get a discount. Obviously different events will have different roles that they’re short on, but a “volunteer bounty” can help bring in extra manpower. Example from the SCRRF Fall Classic: “Teams providing a Key Position volunteer (Referee, Scorekeeper) can request a $100 discount/refund for registration.” (Registration was $300 last year for one of the two days, $400 for both, for comparison, but varies somewhat by year.)

That also helps get people into volunteering. (And teams more ready for districts, maybe? #toosoon:p)