FIRST Lego League
Continuing our commitment to STEAM at all levels, 156 RPM used the preseason to prepare Fairview Middle School's FLL teams for their 2018 regional competition, Into Orbit. Team members volunteered their free time to teach programming, presentation skills, design skills, and teamwork, and then acted as judges for a practice competition. Both of the teams ended up placing in the top 20 out of 46.
No homecoming fair would be complete without 156 RPM and its student built, linear actuated maze. This fan favorite was brought back this year with a entirely new challenge level. Fairview students took turns trying to best the maze. Team members also lead science experiments to entertain and teach the students about capillary action. We left the students wanting more, especially since the rain caused us to wrap up early. See you next year!
Penn State Behrend STEM Fair
For the fourth year in a row, 156 RPM gathered all available members, an awesome robot, and a handful of exciting science experiments for GE's 2018 STEM Fair at Penn State Behrend. About 850 people attended, most of them inquisitive children who were eager to discover our experiments and play with our 2016 robot, Sir Cumference. Joining us was our sister team FRC 291 and even a local FIRST Lego League team.
We are incredibly grateful for GE's continued support of our team, and we're so glad that this event has grown tremendously over the past few years.
Second Harvest Food Bank
Every fall, Erie Area FRC teams donate proceeds from the Murder Mystery Dinner Theater 50/50 raffle to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest Pennsylvania. Three of the four teams, including RPM, brought representatives to present the $601 check. The food bank was able to buy 3005 meals with the donated money.
Donatos Pizza Fundraiser
Again this year, 156 RPM delivered the works to customers at Donatos Pizza. This Fairview family owned restaurant invited us to bring our maze, our robot, and all of our enthusiasm. During our fundraiser, team members encouraged customers to interact with our team and technology while we delivered orders and bussed tables. For dishing out the best that Donatos and FIRST Robotics has to offer, 156 RPM earned 20% of the day's profit!
Super Science Day:
at the Erie Children's Museum
In October of 2017, RPM set up a station at the Erie Children's Museum for their Super Science Day. Much like the SeaWolves Game, children had the opportunity to try out our maze, check out our 3-D printer, and operate one of our mini VEX robots one of our robots. Our goal was to show children how fun and interesting science can really be, and this event was a great way to do so.
SeaWolves Baseball Game
For the past six years, our robot, It's a μ Thing, modified from shooting basketballs to shooting baseballs, has thrown the first pitch at an Erie Seawolves baseball game. We have had booths set up where we have demonstrated simple and interactive science experiments and activities for children and young adults. Attending this baseball team is a great opportunity to spark an interest in STEM in hundreds of kids' minds. We invited other Erie area teams to attend alongside us, and of them, Team 291 and Team 2544 have joined us at one of three games.
Cardboard Boat Regatta:
at the Erie Maritime Center
In 2013, FIRST Team 156 RPM competed in a boat regatta at the Bayfront Maritime Center. The boat regatta is a competition to build a floatable cardboard boat and race it. Our boat, T.O.W. (Taking on Water), was created to look like a robotic shark. There were at least 20 other boat teams there competing, some of them professional. Our team lead the pre-regatta parade around the parking lot, where our robot pulled the boat through the parade. Mentor and team member rowers gave the race their best shot but the boat was shortly sunk. Team member Kevin Cedzo tried to swim the remainder of the race, but he didn’t get far. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it beyond our first race. However, our sinking was so dramatic, they provided us with the Most Dramatic Sinking Award. We used this experience to spread the message of the importance of FIRST and robotics teams.