So I decided to make a map of how the United States will look next year in terms of competitions.

Blue- Districts
Purple- Districts and Regional
Yellow- 7 Regionals
Orange- 4 Regionals
Red- 2 Regionals
Pink- 1 Regional
Green- Teams but no competitions.

My data is based on what has been confirmed for next season and what existed last season. I found it interesting to see it visualized and figured I would post it

Interesting map. I wonder if in a couple of years some of the southern states will start to create a mega-size district or not.

Also, I think a regional in Alabama has been announced.

Jury is still out on Idaho…

That really stinks for some teams in the north central america or Alaskan teams. They have to travel far for competitions. We got spoiled with districts.

There was hope of getting an NC-SC-GA district going for 2016 but apparently that fell through. GA decided to go district alone apparently and NC had already committed. I don’t know the story of how the decisions were made but it’s cool to think of what could have been.

Also, just some constructive criticism: this might be easier to read if you put all the states with regionals as one hue with varying brightness’s. Such as pale red, red, dark red, etc. States with both distrcts and regionals could be a mix of your regional color and your district color. It’s just a little hard to get a feel for the distribution of data if each category is equally unique when the categories themselves are not.

Why isint Idaho a part of the PNW district? Would add a few teams to Events in eastern washington and help grow some teams in eastern Oregon (if a event was put in Boise) where there are not many teams (due to how far the events are for them.)

This has been a debate for quite some time. From a geographic and financial standpoint, it would be difficult to transition all of the 20 teams in Idaho into the district at the beginning. Some of the Northern teams pushed pretty hard last year to have the ability to opt into PNW for the 2015 season and it nearly happened. Many expected it might come to fruition this year.

Even with a potential event in Boise though, the Northern Idaho teams would likely have to stay overnight at both of their district events. Had the District Championship stayed in Spokane, it might have been more viable for them. With the DCMP being held in Portland, some of those teams would have a 6-8 hour drive…

Southern Idaho would have the luxury of a home district (assuming a Boise event), but would have to travel significantly to go to either the West Valley event or one of the Oregon districts. There just aren’t enough Eastern Oregon teams yet to justify a far East event.

Now you’d be asking said teams to potentially stay overnight at 3 events (2 at best), and you create significant travel costs for those teams. All of this before potentially traveling to Worlds.

Eventually PNW might have the capacity and the density in the outer region to hold events and fill the spots at them further East, but they have had enough trouble with West Valley as is and Boise would be no different. It’s important to maintain similar size events and that is one thing that PNW has had to juggle pretty carefully, but has done well so far. With a region expanded that much further, PNW would struggle to find a centralized location for a DCMP, it’s already been an issue that the region hasn’t been able to solve the past few years.

While everyone wants there to be inclusiveness, there are so many dynamic variables when thinking about holding events, how many events to run, how to geographically place them based on density, how to maintain (roughly) equal team capacities…

I definitely would like to see our Idaho friends again, but I’m not convinced the current outcomes would be that much better than the predicament they face right now. In the mean time though, their situation isn’t very great and it’s only going to get worse as district borders tighten up around them :frowning:

Eastern Washington and (especially) Oregon teams already do this?

Besides that, That does make sense. Hopefully northern Idaho can join, give them (less) of a hassle to go to events.

To some extent, yes. Eastern Washington teams have a home district in Spokane, which allows many of them to avoid travel and lodging for at least one district event. Last year with the DCMP in Spokane as well, many of those teams only had to travel once.

You’re correct though, Southern Idaho would face just a slightly worse scenario as the Eastern Oregon teams have already been dealing with.

Agreed. I really do think it should be an Opt-in though. The entire state may not be ready for an annexing into the district, at least until more accommodations can be arranged for those teams. For the meantime, many of those teams get by with a single regional event. That may be all the time and money they can invest into the program at this point, until better options are available.

I just wish USFIRST would allow the state, the district, and those individual teams the ability to make that choice and figure out what works best on a case-by-case basis.

While this would be the best idea, i can see why they would not want that on a full scale, 2500+ teams that would go through that process may be a nightmare for them. Maybe if they had it in concentrated areas (Northern Idaho, Pennsylvania, Teams near the border of other district area, etc.) to keep the opt-in/out may be a better idea.

What this map shows is that making district boarders based on states isn’t going to work much longer. We are going to need to look at forming districts based on common sense and ease of travel. For example, many teams outside of Metro DC would do better in the NC, WV, or TN area group than being attached to DC.

All teams register through FIRST’s online system already. I can’t imagine it would be too difficult to give certain sub-regions the privileges needed to register for events in a specific district.

Not sure why Nevada and other similar stated are classified as a district/ regional states?

I think you’re confusing purple and pink (I did the same thing at first). The only state that’s purple (with Districts and a Regional) is Pennsylvania.

I also remember hearing this. I think it’s called the Rocket City Regional. Should be in Huntsville for the coming year.

The map provides an interesting perspective. I edited the map a little, giving it a more logical color scheme and updating Alabama to reflect the Rocket City Regional. Thank you, Microsoft Paint, for making this possible.

Ah ha! I can discriminate the color difference now that I see the map on my computer instead of my phone, and actually read the legend carefully :wink:

I’d like PNW to find a way to get Idaho as a whole included. Driving distance and hotels costs are an issue. But missed school days are another factor as well. Slightly smaller district events with Friday Load-in and long Saturday / Short Sunday might be a better balance. Seems like the Tri-Cities might be an option as well, reasonable drive for most East of the Cascade Teams, and plenty of Hotel options.

I’m not sure how teams like the big districts but the small district in Indiana was great because no team ever had to travel real far. We stayed overnight at 2 of 3 event but, there were some teams that traveled greater distances and didn’t stay overnight. In the small district like Indiana’s, it creates an even lower cost for teams. Plus, every team pretty much knew each other after each event due to only 49 teams in Indiana. I’m not sure how teams like the big districts like NE District but the IN District is great.