Closing celebration changes for championship

Just got this email from FIRST. Seems they’re starting earlier as well as staying at TCF Center and the George R Brown convention center. States that it will take place under the roofs of those centers. Thoughts?

11 Likes

Dang, they really took away the coolest thing about champs huh

18 Likes

Full email if people want to easily view and copy/paste: https://pastebin.com/7AM9P3JU

Going to have to rethink my usual Einstein viewing plans… the break between the two venues was a great chance for some of us volunteers to get to a local restaurant that let us jack into the TV :slight_smile:

8 Likes

I wonder how much money that will save FIRST.

1 Like

On the positive side, I appreciate how convenient this will make closing ceremonies. Ferrying everyone to Ford Field was a hassle even when a small leadership group from my team went in 2018, and I can’t imagine what bringing an entire team is like. This should expedite the Saturday experience a lot in a good way (dependent on how much Dean rambles). Plus we get to skip the massive and strict security/bag check lines.

That said, I dislike the underlying thought process that seems to be omnipresent throughout these changes to the FIRST Championship structure, which is “both Champs need to be exactly identical.” That is an impossible and unrealistic goal, as holding them at different times and places guarantees that there will be significant differences between the two, such as the game and WFA winners being announced at the first Champs, conference schedules not being consistent throughout Champs, and so on.

But all in all, I think this will make the team experience better, even if some “cool factor” is lost.

20 Likes

Watching Einstein round robin from temporary bleachers in a convention center sucks. Especially because 50% of the audience is watching on a screen anyway, since the premium seating fills quickly and the teams on those division fields already have most of it. Having to watch ceremonies and the Einstein finals there sounds even worse.

Not impressed with this change, at least for the Detroit Championship. I have not experienced Minute Maid park to make a judgment for Houston.

27 Likes

This makes a lot of sense logistically. Yet, I’m still a bit disappointed.

6 Likes

Followed by final matches for FLL, FTC, and FRC

Hopefully not all at the same time… Going between FTC and FRC was already confusing for new viewers and frustrating for FRC/FTC viewers who just wanted to watch their program’s final matches.

2 Likes

So - now I can sit in the pits and watch the finals?

I’m thinking about the field setups at TCF. The inidividual field stands are already packed. How are they going to handle when they go down to only 1 field running? All the spectators have to watch it on the jumbotrons? Because just the teams from the round robins will be able to fill the stands around the one or two fields that get used for the round robins.

IF that’s the case, I really will stay in the pits. We have more comfortable seats there. Our big screen TV is way better than the Jumbotrons too. And there isn’t a mad rush to get out of our pits. We can just take our time putting everything away while we watch Dean monologue.

I feel like I’m going to be very disappointed by this change. I’ll reserve judgement until I hear the actual playoff plans.

7 Likes

This is where I sit as a Houstonite, though Minute Maid Park set the bar much lower than it appears Ford Field did.

1 Like

Ford Field was really not much different than the Edward Jones dome in St. Louis - and most people like that. The frustration with Ford Field was that they only had the finals matches there. Forcing everyone to move, then sit through 4-5 hours of stuff to see 2 2 minute matches was silly.

18 Likes

I’m not going to pretend Ford Field was what made FIRST Champs feel like a championship. But that’s only because it seems more and more like a FIRST Expo every year.

16 Likes

Gonna be honest, I really hated going to Ford Field. You had to get there on time to get a good seat since they set firm limits on where teams could be seated (in order to make the stands look filled? idk) You essentially could never see both FTC and FRC well at the same time. And it was hours of logistics, speeches, and waiting for 2-3 matches. I won’t miss that part of it.

I agree that the current convention center viewing experience for Einstein Round Robin isn’t great. I felt like I could somehow actually see more of the field there? At least one of the two…

Oh well, I guess Champs in a sports dome of any sort is just a relic of a bygone era now. All or nothing is better than the halfway plan they were previously doing, I guess.

15 Likes

Yes, it was. Hours of energy-killing tedium.

9 Likes

Hopefully the live Kickoff that happened this year will be taking the place of the speeches at least. I noticed that Dean touched on a good deal of things he usually brings up in his Championship speeches in the speech at Kickoff.

I totally agree with you. I went to my first worlds last year, and despite having an absolute blast at the closing celebration, it was an absolute grind getting through the 3+ hours of speeches and filler. (We had to leave early due to our transportation contract and actually missed the last match. :cry:) I still think that it was a great way to tie the loose ends of worlds together, and it definitely won’t be the same confined to the convention centre.

As an aside, does this mean they won’t use Ford Field at all? The Welcome Party on the second day was absolutely mind blowing, and I really hope if we happen to make worlds again sometime soon, they don’t take that aspect out of it.

3 Likes

This is the first time in a long time that CD has actually surprised me. The Minute Maid park thing was such a fiasco, year after year, that I had a hard time imagining anyone wanting to keep the finals there. You name it, it went wrong. Sunlight ruining auto routines? Unviewable distances? Uneven playing surfaces, with untested quirks? Unmanageable rules about taking stuff into the park? Yes, all that and more. Give me bleacher seats and none of the hassle, and I’m all in. What’s up with folks??

39 Likes

Happy not to be returning to MMP. Seeing the field at a weird angle or on a screen at the GRB is the same if not better than squinting to see a field seemingly half a mile away from me where the only way to see what is going on is to watch an even further jumbotron.

I welcome this change, and hope that FIRST takes some the money saved from not renting these extra expensive venues and invests it in better bleachers and viewing options for the eventual Einstein finals fields.

19 Likes

I can come out in favor of MMP and get a couple of folks to instantly say they are opposed to it if you’d like.

24 Likes