FIRST Robotics Competition team SigmaC@TS, who take their name from the “SIGMA” quality control program used by corporate sponsor Motorola, and the team’s Dillard school mascot, the Panther, kicked off the FIRST program in Florida in 1995. The team originally had to go to Boston to compete, since there were no competitions in Florida at that time.
Florida’s FRC program began in earnest in 1999 with 28 teams at the Kennedy Space Center Visitors Center. After four years of growth, the Regional Competition moved to the University Of Central Florida Arena in 2003 and has been held there ever since.
Managed by the nonprofit Florida FIRST Robotics Education Foundation (FFREF) , the Orlando Regional (formerly the Florida Regional) is among the oldest FRC events in the nation. In 2013, the event marked its 15th anniversary and hosted more than 60 teams, including teams from South America, and the Dominican Republic.
Team growth in 2011 was sufficiently large enough to warrant the addition of a second Regional event, with the South Florida Regional, in 2012.