Community supports robotics club car wash


April 27, 2023

the car wash team at the Bank of the Pacific during a brief break in the action (Left to right): Nathan, Ron, Cor, Jess, Josh, Brian, Amanda, Peter, Reagen, Annelise, Alan, Alaina, Elijah, Jamey, Micah, Juan, Marjorie, Seojin. Photo by Jessica Vik.

Submitted by Ron Wright

Last Saturday your Mecha Mules Robotics Club (and friends) hosted a carwash fundraiser at The Bank of the Pacific in Cathlamet. We had three goals: to make a good start on raising enough money to pay for our trip back to the Seaperch Internationals in Maryland this May, to begin preparing for next season, and to give back to our community. We achieved all three, plus one more that was obvious to the folks watching the kids and coaches work on their cars. As one commenter put it, "These kids work so well together. They are so smart with their robots, and they also work together as a real team. They are having fun. It is fun just to watch them." We coaches see this on their robotics teams, but didn't realize it was so obvious to anyone watching the carwash. Thank you, owners of every one of the 71 cars who brought their challenge to us, as well as to the people who drove in just to donate. We also wish to thank Johnson's One Stop in Naselle for the loan of their pressure washer: much of our work would have been tougher without it. Jeannie Hendrickson brought pizza for the crew later in the afternoon - a perfect pick-me-up. Thank you Jeannie! "Thank you very much" to URS Electronics in Portland for matching the donations received at the carwash. Finally, thank you to The Bank of the Pacific for being so very generous and supportive of school activities.

At the carwash we were often asked, "Where are the robots?", Ahhh, "Thanks for the question", we replied. They will be at our second fundraising event, the Robot Expo, Friday afternoon, April 28 from 3:30pm to 8:00pm, at the WHS Robot Room and the Cathlamet Town Pool. We will have every robot we can muster to be available for driving by folks attending (except our #1 Seaperch competition robot): by land and by sea. Our #1 Seaperch robot will be demoed-only, by our drivers: Nathan, Peter or Jamey. Speaking of our drivers: while not driving, they have "willingly" agreed to be taped to a wall as a fundraiser: $3 for one piece of duct tape 4' long, or 4 pieces for $10. We are not sure that even this will slow them down. Their time at our Qualifier a few weeks ago on the Obstacle Course was a blistering 39 seconds, 4 seconds faster than the best time by anyone at last year's Seaperch International in Maryland. We will also have other games and challenges for those attending. Each of the activities is hosted by coaches and team members, who also are happy to answer any questions. There is an entrance fee of $15 for the Robot Expo (includes hotdog and drink), with all proceeds going to the robotics club for travel and equipment for this spring and next fall.

Their biggest challenge this year, before and after on the hood, thanks to operator Brian, and a very big thank you to Johnson's One Stop in Naselle for the use of their pressure washer. Photo by Jessica Vik.

Our third fundraiser is our ongoing Sponsor Drive. We believe we have demonstrated ongoing commitment to success on and off the robot field, for our kids preparing for careers, and for helping put Wahkiaum on the world map. So, we are offering a special recognition for those companies and organizations who can commit to at least $200/year for at least five years. Please contact us at Wahkiakum High School, or, email us at for more info.

Finally, there are several ways you can keep informed with what the Mecha Mules are doing. Check with the Sons of Norway for our annual presentation schedule at the Norse Hall. To schedule a presentation for your community organization just email us at Individuals can also get onto our newsletter email list by emailing us at, and using the header of "Newsletter." For this May, getting onto our newsletter list will also get you nightly updates from the team in real time as they represent our community at the International level on the east coast.


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