Two Weeks before the Tournament: Panic!!!!?

[Remember California Creativity Regions have staggered tournament dates, but the Team Manager’s Corner is for everyone.  It’s likely your tournament is not in two weeks — re-read this when it is.]

So two weeks left and there isn’t time to do much of anything but panic. Yes? NO! There are a few tips left in my magic tip bag left:

  • Review your notes from TM training. Try to walk your team through the procedures at least once so they will know more or less what to expect.
  • Sneak in one last read of your Challenge and the Rules of the Road.
  • Suggest the team create a tool/spares kit to take to the tournament. Leave the contents to them but you can suggest some disasters they might reasonably face and ask them what they would need to recover. (If you haven’t got a ten page list of disaster scenarios, you really aren’t trying hard enough.)
  • Discuss with the team what you might need to do if it rains. We used to take cheap plastic drop cloths and have them on hand if things looked grim.
  • Be aware that wind can actually be a bigger problem than rain. My teams have had wind damage more than once. Of course, the team has to fix it, but you can sure try to make sure it doesn’t get damaged in the first place.
  • Do NOT count on there being available electrical outlets at the site to plug in hot glue guns, soldering irons and such for repairs. Of course if your Challenge allows electricity, there will be an outlet/extension cord available for the performance.
  • If things look really bad, don’t despair but come to the tournament anyway. You still get to show off the parts of the solution that do work and (and this is a very big and) you still get to do an Instant Challenge. Confidentially, we have selected some really great ICs this year.

Hang in there and remember there will be plenty of time to really panic between the time the TimeKeeper/Announcer welcomes everyone and the team finishes its performance. Savor those moments. Embrace them.