Another ROBOTICON off-season and FIRST Showcase is in the bag! Our 2019 event brought together 4000 participants and guests, nearly 80 volunteers and 50 teams across all four FIRST programs to play and learn together.   It was a bittersweet weekend, with news of the passing of Dr. Woodie Flowers, but the FIRST Family is a loving one and Sunday played out as a tribute to  Dr. Flowers and his signature ethic of Gracious Professionalism.

Thanks to Rockwell Automation’s awesome Day of Caring volunteer crew, who helped with ROBOTICON set up!

Synapse Challenge top prize winner, Bits4Bots, for most engaging ROBOTICON exhibit

Congrats to Frontier Communications for 2nd place win in Synapse Industry Showcase Challenge!

We had some exciting new additions to ROBOTICON this year, from the help of awesome volunteers from Rockwell Automation and the Gap , during National Day of Caring on October 11, to the Synapse Industry Showcase Challenge recognizing the most engaging exhibitor at ROBOTICON, and our first ever ROBOTICON Alumni gathering, which we held at AMRoC Fab Lab with support from West Florida Robotics, Game Stop and NerdCulture.  We’re also grateful for the support of the R2Builders Group and the 501st Legion for bringing an added measure of fun to ROBOTICON this year, to help us celebrate in Star Wars style!

FIRST Alumni shout out to West Florida Robotics

Teams offered some great workshops, from Roaring Riptide’s session on assistive technology to FIRST Tech Challenge teams providing sessions on everything from creating a good engineering notebook to mechanical and programming workshops.  CITI with Women in Technology, hosted a panel on career pathways. Thanks to Ken Johnson, program director for FIRST Tech Challenge, we were able to award two FIRST Tech Challenge Rookie Team grants to teams interested in starting new FTC teams

Many thanks again to all our amazing event sponsors, and especially to the University of South Florida College of Engineering, Lockheed Martin and to Hillsborough County Government, for their continued support of ROBOTICON.  The county has once again proclaimed October ROBOTICON Month!  Visit our Sponsor page to see all our great event partners, and check out more event photos on our Gallery page, with special gratitude to Myiconography photography.

Finally, congratulations to all our ROBOTICON 2019 award winners, and see you all back for ROBOTICON 2020!


  • Team Spirit Award: Team # 19701 Pikachu Boomtown Fennekin Raptors
  • Teamwork Award: Team # 19914 Girls Rule
  • Robust Design Award: Team # 19913 Be Loving Helpers
  • Innovative Design Award: Team # 14115 LEGO Pros
  • Gracious Professionalism Award: Team # 4336 Coyote Moon Amoebes


  • Team Spirit Award: Team # 45561 – Curiosity
  • Awesome Pit Award: Team # 41354 – The Bumble Bolts
  • Table Score Award: Team # 40096 – Nova Bots
  • Gracious Professionalism Award: Team # 23925 – Belmont Knights

FIRST Tech Challenge

  • Awesome Pit Award: Team #5937 Renaissance Robotics
  • Gracious Professionalism Award: Team #11343 Nova
  • Team Spirit Award : Team #3846 Maelstrom

FIRST Robotics Competition

  • Gracious Professionalism Award:Team #1902 Exploding Bacon
  • Team Spirit Award: Team #4065 Nerds of Prey
  • Awesome Pit Award: Team #2383 Ninjineers
  • Finalist Alliance – #9988 Ninjas in Pyjamas -#2383 Ninjineers –  #3164 Stealth Tigers
  • Winning Alliance – #4065 Nerds of Prey –  #179 Children of the Swamp – #5842 Royal Robotics

Plus Children of the Swamp was awarded the  Judges “It Takes Two Award” for their 2nd robot Tacodile, for utilizing a “successful strategy for setting up their team for long term success.”