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Robotics Teams to Seek Solutions for Seniors at Dec. 8 Tournament

FIRST LEGO League teams will battle it out at the Brandon campus of Hillsborough Community College.

Challenged to seek solutions to problems facing senior citizens, children ages 9 to 14 will gather at the Brandon campus of Hillsborough Community College Saturday, Dec. 8 for the Suncoast FIRST LEGO League Tournament.

The tournament will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the conference center at HCC, 10414 Columbus Dr., Tampa.

The theme of this year's tournament is "Senior Solutions." The competition requires teams to partner with a senior citizen over the age of 60 and research innovative solutions to obstacles that keep seniors from having quality and engaging lifestyles in their communities.

Sixteen teams from throughout Tampa Bay also will compete in a 2 ½-minute robot challenge, seeking to earn as many points as possible. Team robots are pre-programmed to accomplish predefined tasks. Teams design, build and program LEGO Mindstorms NXT robots to earn points during the three-round robotic games.

The teams will be judged on their research presentation, technical interview, core values team-building exercises and the robot challenge.

HCC, TechPlayzone in Riverview, Jet’s Pizza and the Florida Advanced Technological Education Center of Excellence (FLATE) have sponsored the qualifying tournament in the Tampa Bay area for the past four years.

TechPlayzone hosts two FLL robotic teams that meet during the week and on weekends for practice. The team members and families volunteer at the tournament as a team fundraiser. The Techno Whizards are a veteran champion team. The Programming Thunderbots are a rookie award-winning team.

The event is free and open to the public.

For more information about the FIRST LEGO League or the Suncoast FLL Robotics tournament, call tournament director and TechPlayzone owner Desh Bagley at 813-684-7329 or email techplayzone@gmail.com.

TechPlayzone MrsDesh December 06, 2012 at 09:48 PM
Teams from Williams Middle School, Lomax Elementary School, Coleman Middle School, Fort Meyers, Coral Gables, John Long Middle School in Pasco County, Tarpon Springs, Valrico, and more will join the competition on Saturday at HCC Brandon. Come on out and cheer for your favorite robotics teams. Sign in at the Registration Desk and receive a Visitor Sticker. From there you can watch the robotics games, read the research boards, and talk to team members. Special thanks to Low Country Chef, Krispy Kreme, and Jets for feeding our teams and volunteers!
Paula Drennan December 06, 2012 at 09:49 PM
My son is part of FLL through TechPlayZone!! It has been a great experience for him and our family!
Kelley Franks December 07, 2012 at 03:56 AM
We are looking forward to a great event! I know the FLL teams will have a fantastic day!
Ram December 07, 2012 at 09:54 PM
With almost no knowledge about FLL, visiting this tournament was the inspiration for my son to join FLL. He has been part of a FLL team for the past two years and it has been a very rewarding experience!

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