Monday, October 31, 2016

#betthefarm2016 2016 Northeast Alabama BEST Awards List

What a great day of competition Saturday! Here is the list of all the awards:

  • 1st Place BEST Award - Fyffe High School
  • 2nd Place BEST Award - Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • 3rd Place BEST Award - LIGHT Robotics
  • 1st Place Robot - LIGHT Robotics
  • 2nd Place Robot - Fyffe High School
  • 3rd Place Robot - Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • 4th Place Robot - Fort Payne High School
  • Founders' Award for Creative Design - Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • Tennessee Valley Authority Most Robust Machine Award - LIGHT Robotics
  • 1st Place Sand Mountain Electric Cooperative Marketing Presentation - Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • 2nd Place Sand Mountain Electric Cooperative Marketing Presentation -Fyffe High School
  • 3rd Place Sand Mountain Electric Cooperative Marketing Presentation -Fort Payne High School
  • 1st Place Farmers Telecommunications Cooperative Team Exhibit & Interview - Fort Payne High School
  • 2nd Place Farmers Telecommunications Cooperative Team Exhibit & Interview -Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • 3rd Place Farmers Telecommunications Cooperative Team Exhibit & Interview -Fyffe High School
  • 1st Place GH Metal Solutions Project Engineering Notebook - Fyffe High School
  • 2nd Place GH Metal Solutions Project Engineering Notebook -Fort Payne High School
  • 3rd Place GH Metal Solutions Project Engineering Notebook -DeKalb Homeschool Robotics
  • Tennessee Valley Authority Top Gun Award - TIE: LIGHT Robotics, Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • Polyvance Blood, Sweat and Duct Tape Award - Boaz Middle School
  • Community Action Agency of Northeast Alabama Spirit & Sportsmanship Award - Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • Source 4 Manufacturing Best CAD Design - Marshall Co. Robotics Coalition
  • Berry & Dunn Office Equipment Best T-shirt Design - DeKalb Homeschool Robotics
  • Mathworks Simulink Software Design & Simulation Award - Fyffe High School
  • Cool Tools & More Best Middle School Team - Bridgeport Middle School
  • Jackson County Farmers Federation Spirit of BEST Award for Attitude - LIGHT Robotics 
  • Source 4 Manufacturing Spirit of BEST Award for Grit - Boaz Middle School
  • Marshall DeKalb Electric Cooperative Best Team Theme - Cornerstone Christian School
  • DeKalb County Development Commission Best Website - Fort Payne High School
  • Fort Payne Improvement Authority Most Economical Design - North Sand Mountain High School
  • DeKalb Farmers Federation Most Photogenic Robot - Marshall County Robotics Coalition
  • Rainsville Chamber of Commerce BEST Rookie Team - Stevenson Middle School
Congratulations to all who participated! Fyffe High School and LIGHT Robotics will represent Northeast Alabama BEST at South's BEST in December. 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

#betthefarm2016 Game Day Schedule and Exhibit Set Up

Dear BEST Teams:

Exhibit booth set up is scheduled for Friday, October 28 from noon until 4:00 pm. However, if you wish to set up early you may set up as early as 10:00 am. The field is set up but has not been precisely set yet. However, unless the Northeast Alabama BEST crew is working on the field, you are welcome to have some driving practice on Friday as well.

Here is the game day schedule:

Game Day Schedule
Saturday, October 29, 2016
Northeast Alabama Agri-Business Center

7:30 a.m.                          Doors Open

7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.      Registration
·       Teacher/mentor in charge of Game Day must register upon arrival
·       Each team will receive the following in your registration packet:
o   Six Pit Passes for drivers and mentors (At least five of these passes must be issued to students. One may be used for a teacher or mentor. NO others will be granted access. Pit passes must be worn at all times while in the pit.)
o   Wrist bands for drivers – Numbered bands will designated driving order
o   Wrist band for team representative – This wrist band will be placed on the one student who is designated to speak to the Field Boss regarding any questions or disputes. According to BEST rules, team members may not question referees. All questions must be referred to the Field Boss through the Team Representative.

·       Access to the pit will take place only at the northeast gate ONLY. Do not use other access points to the pit/field area.  
·       Each team will complete a Driver Roster at check-in. Teams must adhere to this list and the order throughout game day. All drivers will receive a wrist band that will determine their rotation. Drivers must also wear a pit pass when competing or in the pit.

8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.      Compliance Check-in and Pit Set-up
·       All teams must be robot compliant or the team will not be able to compete. Read the rules carefully!
·       Any team that is not compliant will be given the opportunity to go outside and rebuild, make adjustments, whatever it takes to become legal. We want teams to compete!
·       Each team will be provided a table to keep their robot and tool box at all day in the pit.
·       A battery charging station will be located in the pit area. Teams need to bring their own battery charger and are responsible for charging their own batteries.
·       Tables will be set up in the pit area for simple tools. Saws, drills, etc. must remain outside.
·       Compliance staff will be on hand to assist and answer any questions.

9:00 a.m.                          Driver’s Meeting
·       ALL drivers should be in the pit by 8:50 a.m. There will be a driver’s meeting at 9:00 a.m. to review rules for the day. Attendance is mandatory for all drivers.

9:30 a.m.                          Seeding Rounds Begin and Exhibit Booths Open
·       Seeding rounds begin.
·       Exhibit booths should open and remain open until the lunch break.

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 pm    Lunch Break
·       All teams must leave the arena by 11:45 a.m.
·       If teams wish to make repairs/modifications to their robot during lunch they must remove their robot and make repairs outside the arena. The robot must then go back through compliance before re-entering the competition. Compliance will open at 12:45 p.m.
·       Lunch is on your own. The concession stand will be open and a list of local restaurants will be provided. Teams may choose to bring lunches and eat on site.
·       Please have your exhibit booth staffed from 12:00 noon until 12:45 so that judges may visit during this time.

12:40 p.m.                        Line Up for Opening Ceremony
·       All team members should go outside to south side of building to line up for the opening ceremony. We will line up in team number order.
·       All BEST team members in attendance, including mentors and teachers, should be a part of the opening ceremony.
·       PLEASE DO NOT TALK while BEST officials are lining up the teams. There will be several hundred people who need to hear instructions so even the quietest talking can be disruptive. Please save your energy and enthusiasm for when your team is announced.
·       Mascots, bands, etc. may march in with the teams.

1:00 p.m.                          Opening Ceremony!
·       Teams will be called in team number order. This is an opportunity for your team to be recognized for your hard work. Please be courteous to other teams as their team names are called.

1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.      Robot Competition Rounds and Exhibits Open
·       Seeding rounds continue leading into semifinal and final rounds
·       Please keep your exhibit booth manned at all times
·       Be ready for spirit breaks by bands, cheers from your cheerleaders, mascot dance-off, and other fun stuff!

4:00 p.m.                          Exhibit breakdown may begin
·       All exhibits must be removed by 6:00 p.m.
·       All booth parts and trash need to go home with you!

5:00 p.m.                          Awards Ceremony (TIME IS APPROXIMATE)

Mandatory meeting of teams advancing to South’s BEST will be held after the awards ceremony.

NOTES: Very important!! Please read the following to your students:

·       MUST WEAR SHIRTS AND NO BODY PAINT! Face painting and tattoos are acceptable.
·       No large flags please (such as those seen at football games). Large flags obstruct the view of others.
·       Only Northeast Alabama BEST volunteers, judges, and VIPs with credentials are allowed in the Hospitality Room.
·       No Frisbees, beach balls, or items that may end up on the playing field will be allowed. This is to ensure no interference with the playing field.
·       No walkie-talkies allowed in the pit and game area.
·       Leave the facility cleaner than you found it. Please take all trash, materials, etc. with you when you leave.
·       You are encouraged to bring pep bands, cheerleaders, parents, siblings, friends, relatives, mascots, and school officials to cheer you on. All fans will be seated in the bleachers at the south end of the facility.

#betthefarm2016 Sponsor Spotlight: Rainsville Chamber of Commerce

We are pleased to have the continued support of the Rainsville Chamber of Commerce as a sponsor of Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics. The Chamber was one of the first sponsors to come on board when we were starting our hub in 2012 and have remained strong contributors since then.

We hope that when you are in town for game day that you will take time to eat and shop in Rainsville!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

#betthefarm2016 Sponsor Spotlight: Fort Payne Improvement Authority

We are pleased to have Fort Payne Improvement Authority on board as a bronze sponsor again this year. FPIA has been a solid supporter of BEST since 2013 and we appreciate all they do for the community and for Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

#betthefarm2016 Sponsor Spotlight: Source 4 Manufacturing

We are pleased that Source 4 Manufacturing, of Scottsboro, has joined Northeast Alabama BEST as a Silver Sponsor this year. A BEST sponsor since 2013, Source 4 Manufacturing is a local, family-owned company that is deeply involved in the community.

We thank them for being part of the Northeast Alabama BEST family!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Sponsor Spotlight: Tennessee Valley Authority

Thanks to the Tennessee Valley Authority for being a sponsor of Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics. TVA has been a sponsor since the inception of Northeast Alabama BEST in 2012.

This year TVA is providing $100 per team to help with expenses. They will also provide $500 for each of the teams advancing to South's BEST in Auburn.

Beyond the direct support to teams, TVA has provided funds each year to help us build the field, purchase kits, and provide training opportunities. We appreciate their sponsorship of BEST!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Clarification on Live Animals and Food

It has come to our attention that the rules this year indicate that no food may be given out at exhibit booths. We are interpreting this to include candy. Therefore, please refrain from giving out candy at your exhibit booth. 

A news post on our website answered the question regarding having live animals in exhibit booths. While this is not specifically forbidden by BEST rules, we strongly discourage the use of live animals in your booth. The cost, in our view, definitely outweighs the benefit. 

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation in this matter. 

Please address any questions regarding these issues to Dr. Mike Kennamer (