Hi Friend,

Season Calendar: Make sure your team is keeping up with the season calendar and noting the following important registration dates:

Safety Animation Award sponsored by UL: The 2020 Safety Animation Award theme is ‘Sustainability on the RISE’. Students must submit their team’s Safety Animation video through the FIRST Youth Team Member Registration System. The student submitting must be marked as an award submitter. Animations must be submitted between Thursday, October 24, 2019 at 12 p.m. noon ET and Thursday, December 5, 2019 at 3 p.m. ET. Click here for more information.

New Team Growth Grant: This season we are offering the New Team Growth Grant. This grant is open to newly formed FIRST® Robotics Competition teams that are either Rookies or Non-Rookies not formed by Separation or Combine. More information about these definitions is here. Grants are due by 11:59 p.m. ET on November 1, 2019. Apply today!  If you have any questions regarding this new grant please send an email to frcrookie@firstinspires.org.

Kit & Kickoff selections: Reminder that all teams must complete their Kickoff selections for the 2020 season prior to Monday, November 18, 2019 at noon ET.  To select a Kickoff, under the Team Events section the lead coach/mentor 1 or 2 will select “Event Options,” then “Kit & Kickoff.” Please note the following before making your selections: 

  1. Picking up your Kickoff Kit at a Local Kickoff will save your team shipping costs;
  2. If your team chooses not to attend any Local Kickoff, the Kickoff Kit will be shipped to your designated contact, and your team will be responsible for the shipping costs. Teams that pay to have their Kickoff Kit shipped will receive their kits some time after Kickoff.  There is no guaranteed delivery date.  International teams should be aware that delivery date will depend on customs clearance;
  3. Your team may attend more than one Kickoff. For example, you can send members to the Kickoff in Manchester, NH, while others can attend a Local Kickoff in your area. However, you must indicate only one Kickoff for Kickoff Kit pickup;
  4. Please note that to receive your Kickoff Kit, either at your Kickoff location or by having it shipped to you, you must have paid your registration fee and any associated shipping fees. 

Questions about Kickoff? Please contact frckickoff@firstinspires.org for assistance.

Robot Transportation Exemption Requests: We are continuing the Robot Transportation Exemption program in 2020, which allows teams to request assistance in shipping their robots to Regional events (if transporting their robot to the event themselves would be a hardship). The deadline for this application is Friday, November 22, 2019 by 3 p.m. ET.  For information on the criteria and how to apply visit the Robot Transportation page. We also encourage international teams to visit the Robot Transportation page for shipping information and tips.

Episode 4 of Galactic Builders now available: A Visit to Industrial Light & Magic: In episode 4 of Galactic Builders, students from FIRST Robotics Competition team “The Funky Monkeys” (San Jose, CA) get a behind-the-scenes tour of Industrial Light & Magic and learn how droids from the Star Wars galaxy, like K-2SO, are brought to life through visual effects tools and technologies like motion capture. Previous episodes featured FIRST students meeting with engineers and designers who use robotics to bring Star Wars experiences to life at Hasbro HQ, Lucasfilm, and Walt Disney Imagineering. Watch all four episodes and share.

2020 Virtual Field: Have you checked the latest FIRST Robotics Competition blog entry? Your team can now virtually experience the 2020 field!

Event Housing: Now that your events are selected for the 2020 season, select your hotel blocks. Don’t wait until the season starts to search for and book housing – most hotel blocks close three weeks prior to the event. When your team books with FIRST, you:

  • Stay close to the venue and other teams
  • Receive guaranteed low rates
  • Rest easy at FIRST-reviewed hotels
  • Enjoy convenient FIRST-contracted amenities at most hotels including complimentary parking, Wi-Fi, and breakfast
  • Gain flexibility to make booking adjustments and pay later
  • Earn reward points at your preferred hotels
  • And of course, support your region with earned rebates that go towards improving local future local FIRST Robotics Competition events

Find your event housing now

As always, we are here to help. Please contact our Customer Support Team with any questions.
FIRST® Robotics Competition Team Support