Today I set my 5th Guinness World Record at the inaugural FIRST Robotics regional competition in Taco Bell Arena at Boise State. You’d think by now that the nerves wouldn’t get to me, but they still do. On my fifth try I had a 49.6 second run with 364 catches to beat the minimum Guinness threshold of 250.
There were hundreds of students competing with some very impressive robots vying for a spot at the national competition. FIRST is an amazing program that promotes STEM education through robotics, mentorship and gracious professionalism.
Lots of MIT connections: Don Bosse is the FIRST President and MIT alum, VP of development Mark Giordono is an MIT alum, and of course co-founder of FIRST, Woodie Flowers, was a longtime professor of 2.007 which is what FIRST was modeled after. I did the e to the u du dx cheer for them. Before setting the record, I told Jennifer’s story of getting involved with FIRST and how it inspired her to become and mechanical engineer and go off to MIT (and I’m so glad she did, since she’s far and away the best thing I got out of MIT)! And now she’s a walking, talking, woman in STEM success story.
Boise is hosting its first FIRST Robotics Regional competition at the Taco Bell Arena at BSU next weekend. It’s basically a competitive sporting event for academics. On April 2nd, after the 9AM morning rounds and before the Alliance selection (right before lunch), I’ll be talking to these motivated high school students about the importance of working hard, maintaining a positive mindset and some of the setbacks I once faced in a robot competition.
I’ll then attempt a Guinness World Record to claim title to the World’s Fastest Blindfolded Juggler. “Most juggling catches in a minute blindfolded (three balls)”.
The event is free and open to the public. Come watch these students and their robots compete and catch the juggling show around 10:45.
This record combines elements from two other records: blindfold and speed. It’s also the first record I’ll be attempting that’s new to Guinness (meaning there isn’t a person’s record I’m trying to beat, just a baseline of 250 catches in a minute). That makes sense, as there are probably only a handful of people in the world who can regularly juggle for a full minute blindfolded, let alone fast.
Tonight we raised over $20K for the Idaho STEM Action Center!
I set a 4th Guinness World Record in the process. Longest chainsaw balance on the chin: 3 minutes 1 second, beating the old world record by over a minute. I shared about how I had no coding experience before I got to MIT and how Jennifer decided to become a mechanical engineer in part due to FIRST Robotics. Then I asked for money to support 2 related STEM initiatives.
Thanks to the team: Witnesses: Lt. Governor Brad Little. Idaho State Board of Education Member David Hill. Delta Dental IT Director Cory Vaughn. Consultant for Idaho Secretary of State Chad Houck. MC Johnna Johnson from KBOI 2 News. Timers: Jack Ward from the YMCA and Mike Beacham from Idaho Power. Video: Becky Beacham, Photography: Jennifer Rush
After a 30-minute juggling show inspiring kids to pursue STEM education, I attempted to set the Guinness World Record for “Most juggling head rolls in a minute (three balls)”. I beat the previous record of 135 on the first try with 141 but had almost 18 seconds left when I dropped a ball. On the 2nd try I got 194.
Here’s the minute and 1 minute 44 second summary of the day:
CBS News 2 showed up and I gave a short interview about what I was up to and how I try to encourage kids to pursue Science and Technology while I have their attention with juggling.
Thanks to the team.
Thanks also to Kylee Granden at Cumulus media for inviting me and Tommy Collins at NASH FM 97.9 for the great radio voice introduction.
On a challenge from Juggle Wiki, I decided to set another (non-Guinness) World Record. It took me 25 hours (including sleep and breaks) but I set a new world record to make me the World’s Fastest 4 Ball Juggler (unofficial). I do have video evidence. Kids, if you set you mind to it and work hard: you can do it!
I have a Guinness World Record attempt for “Most juggling head rolls in one minute (three balls)” at the Kids Fair Saturday, Feb 27th at 1 PM at Expo Idaho. The current record is 135 head rolls. A head roll is where a juggling ball place on the head, rolls off, is caught and juggling resumes.
I’ll be giving a 45-minute performance encouraging students to pursue STEM degrees and then I’ll attempt to set the record.
Thank you to everyone (over 500!) who came out and I hope all you kids consider pursuing STEM degrees. Thank you also to the witnesses, timekeepers, photographers and videographers: I couldn’t have done it without you (credits below)!
This was the highest pressure show I’ve ever put on. It started with the official Guinness attempt – I had runs of 315 and about 300 catches, both over 50 seconds before a drop! I finally got it after several minutes of close calls and trying to calm my nerves. I then put on a 45-minute show promoting STEM education and emphasizing the power of setting your mind something and working hard to pursue it. Some of the content came from Carol Dweck’s “Mindset”.
A second Guinness World Record attempt is scheduled. On Saturday, February 6th , 1 PM at the Boise State Engineering and Science Festival in the Simplot Ballroom at the Student Union Building at BSU.
World’s Fastest 5 Ball Juggler, David Rush,All Ages, 1:00pm(45 minutes) (I) – Local technology professional and juggler on the side will share his STEM story told through juggling, culminating with an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for “most juggling catches in one minute (five balls)”. The current record is 330 catches in 1 minute (5.5 catches per second). BSU SUB in Simplot ballroom
The festival runs all day (9-4) with over 40 cool activities for kids of all ages. Come hear an astronaut speak, build your own circuit, design a catapult and see the freezing effects of liquid nitrogen.
As this is an official Guinness attempt, it must be verified by official witnesses. A couple folks who have graciously agreed to be the official witnesses:
Matt Freeman: Executive Director, Idaho State Board of Education
George Mulhern: CEO, Cradlepoint. Former partner, Highway 12 ventures; SVP, HP
Greg Alexander: Superintendent, Garden Valley School District
Let’s get more students involved and excited about STEM education!
The attempt took place on October 2nd a little after 4PM in the Basque Block in downtown Boise at the Cradlepoint block party. The 20mph gusty wind didn’t cause too many problems .
Now I just need to submit all the official documents, video and photographic evidence and wait for the official certificate from Guinness.
I may have been able to keep going but when 300 people started cheering at the world record mark on my first run I got so excited I overthrew a ball and dropped it. My arms were pretty wobbly the entire run but I was able to count catches and focus enough to keep calm until the surge of adrenaline caused all loss of fine motor control.