Friday (6/28) was lighter on the official Skills USA activities, so we used some of our time to explore Kansas City.
In the morning was a debriefing with the Robotics & Automation judges and competitors. For lunch, we searched out an Indian restaurant, and ate from the buffet at Kansas City’s Taj Mahal Restaurant.
The Missouri team’s advisor had recommended that we, as fans of automation, visit the Federal Reserve bank & museum. So we did!
Here is how to tell if a bill is counterfeit:
Here is $40,000,000 in fake money:
The most exciting part of the visit was seeing through windows into the functioning part of the bank. This included a machine that automatically sorts money into three categories: good (which is redistributed out to other banks), worn-out (which it then shreds), and suspected counterfeit (which is then presented to the Secret Service for further investigation). Also it was pretty cool to see yellow Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) moving around and carrying pallets of money, with no driver. Unfortunately, photography was not allowed in this section of the museum!
In case you’re interested, here’s a link to a video of some other AGVs.
When we left, we each got a bag of free money (worth about $165 before it had been shredded).
Kansas City calls itself the City of Fountains. In addition to the fountains outside our hotel,
and the fountains at the Federal Reserve,
we also saw several other fountains walking around near downtown:
Friday evening was the closing ceremony.
They had a lot of contests to get through, with gold and silver and bronze medalists from both high school and postsecondary in 98 categories. Here you can see them lining up the winners from three contests simultaneously on stage in the dark.
We cheered on all the Maryland medalists.
Afterward, we headed back to an ice cream social with the rest of our state. In this picture, you can see on his lanyard that Abhishek has traded and received a lot of pins from other states:
Bhola & Abhishek got certificates of participation. Here is a picture of the three of us, posing together: