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Boosting Engineering, Science, and Technology

Build a robot in six weeks;               
inspire a youth for a lifetime

Volunteer Newsletter
Issue: #14-006
Quick Links


Teacher / Mentor Institute

21 and 22 July
Auraria Campus 7th Street Bldg Denver
8:30 AM - 4 PM



  6 September

South High School
Noon - 4 PM
Practice  Day

11 October

Thomas Jefferson High School Denver
  9 AM - 3 PM

Game Day

18 October


Auraria Event Center


7:30 AM - 5 PM


Steering Team

Carolyn Bauer-Hub Director, Game


JoAnne Fry and Lori Lazuk-

Consumable Kits


Jose Lopez-School Interface


MSU Students-Protobot


Linda King-Volunteer Interface


Linda Scott-Secretary, Awards & Judging


Lois Walton-Budget


Patty Gaspar-Events


Scott McEwen-Venues


Board of Directors


Kathy Geise - President


Linda Scott - Vice President


Jose Lopez - Executive Director


Carolyn Bauer - Secretary &  Hub Director


Lois Walton - Treasurer


Tim Bouvia - Member at Large





Welcome to the June 2014 Rocky Mountain BEST Volunteer Newsletter.
It is just a little over 60 days to the Kickoff Event for our 5th annual BEST robotics competition and we hope we can find ways to get YOU involved.

In this newsletter, we provide a review of BEST History, an update on schools interested in competing in 2014, include information about help needed this summer to assemble the kits and construct the game field and also about contacting us to volunteer at the 2014 events in September and October.  We close with newsletter with information on our fundraising and how you might be able to help.
Please forward this newsletter to others who might be interested in Rocky Mountain (RM) BEST.  
2014  Blade Runner
22nd Year of BEST and 5th Year of Rocky Mountain BEST

The idea for a BEST competition originated in 1993 when two Texas Instruments engineers, Ted Mahler and Steve Marum, were serving as tour guides at the company's annual high school engineering day. During the tour, the engineers' group watched a video of a Massachusetts Institute of Technology freshman class building a robot. The student audience was so excited by the video that the engineers asked, "Why don't we do this in Texas?" After presenting their ideas to TI's Sherman Site Managers, Mahler and Marum received enthusiastic approval and North Texas BEST was organized. After the first year's competition, other local hubs joined the fun and the state competition, Texas BEST, was established. The first competition was held in 1993 with 14 schools and 221 students. In fall 2013, over 853 teams and 15,354 students participated.

We have 32 schools from around much of Colorado interested in competing with 3 schools on the waiting list. After 26 teams last year with 364 students, we are thrilled to have our largest number of schools competing in this year's Blade Runner game.  

Please ask any schools that might be interested to visit our website or contact Jose Lopez at jlopez@rockymountainbest.org.
If you missed it previously, check out the 67 second Blade Runner Teaser Video . Is there a hint in the teaser about this year's game?
Volunteers Needed Near Term
Kit Team (June - August) and Game Field (July and August)

Monday Kit Team (June - August): The Kit Team is preparing the returnable and consumable kits that will be provided to each team that participates in the 2014 competition. A newly received grant means they'll purchase materials for and assemble 4 more kits this year! They will meet Mondays at 999 Vallejo St #2, Denver near I-25 and 8th Avenue from 10 AM - 3 PM. They expect to be moving their racks and material from the second floor to the first floor in early July and would NEED extra helpers for this big task. They can always use an extra hand and no experience or specific skill is needed. If interested in receiving the kit team email for schedule updates and other information, please contact Carolyn at cbauer@rockymountainbest.org


Game Field Builders (July - August): Use BEST provided drawings to construct and assemble game field pieces. We expect to have final drawings available by early July with construction in July and August. Full assembly of all components and testing must be completed at least two weeks prior to 6 September Kickoff. Multiple separate components permit multiple independent helpers to separately construct their components.Tools needed include the following depending on component: saws to cut plywood, lumber, foam, and PVC; wood sander; paint brushes; drill for bolt holes; and bolt and screw drivers. Skills needed include: read drawings, construct using tools above, and assemble components with glue (PVC), screws, and nuts/bolts. If interested, please contact Carolyn at cbauer@rockymountainbest.org for more information.


Kit and Game Field Donations - We need ideas on obtaining zero or reduced cost consumable robot and game field materials. For example, we need lots of PVC pipes and wood. If you have suggestions or need more information, please contact JoAnne at jfry@rockymountainbest.org.

Volunteers Needed for 2014 Events
Kickoff 6 September, Practice Day 11 October, and Game Day 18 October

We are starting planning for this year's events and are collecting names of those interested in volunteering.


Please check your calendars and mark these events.


Most event day positions require no advanced training or specific skills and require from 2 to 8 hours of your time on the day of the event. These positions include setup, registration desks, pit monitors, first aid, staging crew, lunch set up, and venue cleanup. The Practice and Game day referee and scorekeeper positions require advance review of documents and attendance at a training session prior to Practice Day and compliance check positions requires document review. 


Please contact Linda at lking@rockymountainbest.org for more information or to get on the event volunteer lists.

We could not do it without our donors!
Finding funding for each year's competition

Thanks to all our donors and sponsors, we are making great progress in establishing funding to support our 32 schools for 2014. 


Each year we pursue funding for that year's competition to enable schools to compete without cost for the competition. We receive donations from individuals through the Colorado Gives website and our Boosting BEST silent auction. We receive funding directly from corporations and via grants from organizations. We receive in kind donations for facilities and material donations for kits and game fields. Thank you all for your support! 


If you'd like to donate, please use this link for our ColoradoGives page.
Also, if your company has gift matching through Benevity, Rocky Mountain BEST is one of the eligible non-profit organizations.  Please check with your company about gift matching!


We are always looking for additional business or organization sponsors to support and expand our work with Rocky Mountain schools. If you know of an organization that might be interested in sponsoring us at any level or a grant we might pursue, please contact Lois Walton at lwalton@rockymountainbest.org  


We would not be successful without you!  We are looking forward to working with you in 2014.

Linda King

Volunteer Interface, Rocky Mountain BEST


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