First Round of Robotics Winners Announced, Two More Chances to Watch

Fourteen teams of students ages 9 to 14 competed at the FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) robotics tournament last Saturday, Dec 2. The Hood River Middle School event welcomed teams from as far as Madras, Skamania, Goldendale and Trout Lake as well as Odell and Hood River. Four teams were chosen to advance to the state competition in January. Everyone is invited to watch the fun next weekend at two more tournaments on Dec 9 and 10 at The Dalles Middle School, with best viewing between 9:30am and 2:30pm.

Teams worked over the past several months to design and program robots and complete a research project. At the Gorge tournaments, teams demonstrate their robot’s capabilities on the competition table, are interviewed by a robot design panel, present their research project and are assessed on teamwork skills.

The Gorge events are held by the Gorge Technology Alliance with support from Oregon Robotics Tournament and Outreach Program, North Wasco County School District 21, Hood River County School District and the Gorge STEM Hub. Top local sponsors include Google, Hood Tech and Insitu.

Organizers congratulate all the teams who competed on Dec 2 and honored these top award winners:

  • Overall 1st Place Champions: The Natural Disasters from Wy’east Middle School.
  • Overall 2nd Place Champions: Hero Robot Monkeys from Hood River.
  • Additional top teams that advanced to the state tournament: Hydro Hogs from May Street Elementary and Water Wizards of Hood River Middle School.

Additional top awards were given to a number of teams for their outstanding performances in specific areas of the competition:

  • Core Values Award: Green Apple Lava Cake Exploding Cows from T.A.S.D.O. with Trout Lake School.
  • Project Award: Robotic Catfishes 2.0 from Westside Elementary.
  • Robot Design Award: BrainStorm Troopers from Jefferson County 4-H.
  • Robot Performance Award: Hero Robot Monkeys from Hood River.

For more information about youth robotics in the Gorge, visit or contact Jessica Metta with the GTA at 541-296-2266 or