Due to the cancellation of the Nova East Odyssey of the Mind regional tournament at West Potomac this year, we are offering partial refunds to those who desire them.  Please click the link and fill out the Google form if you are interested.


First, CCI has changed the process for teams to register. They may register now at no cost and will only have to pay the fee if they wish to upload a video. This is to let us get a better idea on the number of teams our judges might have to see through video.

Second, Virtual World Finals clarifications are now being responded to. CCI is busy making modifications to the VWF and answering questions.

CCI is changing the Coaches Competition problem into a Family Problem. It will let families have fun and be creative together while they are confined to their homes.

Finally, they will be creating and making available our own version of the Creativity Festival. That might not appear for more than one week.

Thanks to all. Have a Happy Passover and a Wonderful Easter. Stay healthy, safe, and happy!

Pamela Clark

(message FW from CCI-Creative Competitions, Inc.)

Nova East Video Exhibition and Online World Finals

Thanks to all of the teams, judges, and coaches that participated in our video exhibition!! The videos had more than a thousand views for a total of 70 hours of watching. All participating coaches should have received their team specific feedback, and we are thankful to our volunteer judges who graciously provided teams with valuable comments about their creative solutions.

ALL teams who completed problems 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 are eligible to participate in this year’s Odyssey of the Mind World Finals, and some teams will be able to submit the same video(s). For other teams, however,  the video you used for our regional exhibition may not be sufficient. If your video did not include a full run of your problem, you might investigate whether you have the possibility of developing a new video without violating social distancing rules. A team in New York demonstrated how this is possible. They used the Primary Problem to craft their sample solution just to give teams a sense of what teams might do.

The full rules for the competition can be found on the Odyssey Web-site, but the most important takeaway is that CCI wants everyone to continue to be safe.  No one is proposing that teams jeopardize their health by getting together to create something; however, they do believe that the creative thinkers who participate are equal to the task of adapting their solution to fit the criteria laid out on the official Odyssey of the Mind website.

If you have questions about the virtual WF regulations, please send them to: .

Congratulations to all teams and coaches that participated in Odyssey this year and we hope everyone stays safe and healthy!

Update on World Finals

Odyssey of the Mind has written the attached letter for Odyssey of the Mind supporters.  They will be offering a World Finals event virtually.  The specifics will come out tomorrow, April 1st, and we will post them then.  But for now, here’s the letter so you can see what CCI is thinking and prepare for tomorrow’s announcement.

Letter to Teams Virtual World Finals


While we are sad that we were unable to have our regional tournament this year due to COVID-19, we are excited that 29/135 have decided to share a video of a dress rehearsal, practice, brainstorming session, or explanation of their team’s process. Trained judges will be viewing these videos and commenting on the videos, and that feedback will be sent to coaches late next week.  We welcome anyone who wishes to view these videos to check them out using the link below.  You may also share the link with family members and friends.  The video exhibition is password-protected and the videos are private and cannot be downloaded.  They will be taken down on Sunday night. We advise that when you watch a video, instead of clicking the play button right away, hover your cursor over the school’s name till it turns blue and click from there.  That will enable you to read the description of the team’s solution before you watch their video.  Please enjoy!


Nova East Region 11 is planning on offering partial refunds since we had to cancel the tournament on March 14.  Sadly, some of the funds submitted cannot be recouped, like judges’ t-shirts, facilities for judges’ training, awards, etc.  Also, while West Potomac High School is planning to refund our facility use fee, it has not done so as of yet.   It is likely that may not occur until after the crisis is over, so at this point we’re not in a financial place to grant those partial refunds.  We will put out an email to all coordinators on the listserv and post on our website when we are able to issue refunds and a form to fill out so the monies are directed back to person or organization who made the initial payment.  We appreciate your patience with regards to this.  If you are currently experiencing a financial difficulty at this time, please email, and we will try to expedite the process for you.

Video Exhibition – Please Sign Up!

Dear Coaches,

We know these are stressful, busy times, but we’re hoping teams will take advantage of submitting a video for the exhibition this weekend.  It could be a great way to give the kids a sense of closure and provide them with some feedback from judges.  We already have several judges who have volunteered to help with this!  We haven’t heard from many of you yet. We’re hoping you perhaps you were working yesterday to get permission from parents and look for the video footage, and perhaps fill out a team list form to upload.  We would love to have as many teams participate as possible.  Remember:

  1. We are NOT asking for teams to get together and perform it to take a new video.
  2. A video of a run-through, practice, brainstorm session, or even one kids talking about the solution’s premise, the props, costumes, etc. would be fine.  One team even had each team member do a short video of a themselves and their props and they strung them all together to submit.  (Video limit: 10 minutes total)
  3. You don’t even need paperwork if you don’t have any.  When you sign up it asks:

What text would the team members like to include on their video description for the judges? This will be a short paragraph to be displayed below the video.

         You could simply describe what they did briefly for any judge or team watching.

  1. All teams will have access to watch ALL the other teams that post, so they can get a feel for all the hard work everyone did.

We sincerely hope teams will decide to participate.  The forms to submit is:  And if you have questions, you can contact or


Nova East Region 11 is planning on creating a video exhibition for teams that have videos they can present of their long-term solution.

This is an opportunity for teams to present videos that THEY ALREADY HAVE. We are not suggesting teams try to get together to prepare a new video. Ideally, the video would be a run-through of their performance, but if you do not have this, you can submit partial presentations or even a team’s brainstorming session for review by the judges. You can also include a short video of someone on the team discussing their props and creative process. If you can bundle these together, that would be great, but submitting multiple videos is acceptable.  We sincerely hope that many teams will be able to participate in this celebration of creative problem solving.  If you have any questions about the process, please email Jaime at or  Dan at

Please stick to the 10 minute total time limit for all posted video(s).

The exhibition will take place March 28 – 29 and will be handled as follows:

(1) Make sure you have agreement from the parents of all team members to share their videos with our community for a 2-day period.  They will be posted in Vimeo in such a way that they cannot be downloaded.

(2) Submit your intention to participate here.

(3) You will then receive an email with a link to a google drive folder. Please place materials in this folder.

    a. Your performance video

    b. Optional: a short video discussing your props and solution.

    c. Your forms, if you have them, especially the team list form.

        Forms are available


(4) You have until midnight on March 25 to post your materials

(5) On March 28 in the morning, you will receive a link to the video exhibitions for each problem.

  a. The videos will be available for viewing on March 28 and March 29 and will not be downloadable.

  b. You can forward the link to friends and family for them to see.

  c. Access will be password protected but we will send you the password.

  d. During that time, judges will be reviewing the videos and making comments.

(6) By Friday April 3,  you will receive access to a document with the comments from the judges that you can forward and/or review with your team.


This is a message to VA OMERs, Coaches, Families, Volunteers:

By March 13th, the regional boards had decided to cancel the remaining six Regional Tournaments and the Virginia State VOICES board decided to cancel the State Tournament.  I believe it was an inevitable and wise decision but a very sad one to make as everyone worked extremely hard this season to prepare their team’s long-term problem solutions, sets, props, costumes, and presentations; prepare for a wide variety of spontaneous problems; prepare to host the region and state tournaments; and, prepare to go to the World Finals. We understand your disappointment so close to tournament time.

Since Governor Northam declared a State of Emergency, all Virginia schools are closed for several weeks.  Recently, our respective school superintendents informed us to prepare for extensions as warranted by the persistence of this virus.  Odyssey of the Mind has existed in Virginia for 38 years because of the support of the school districts and our volunteers. We cannot violate the school districts’ trust in Odyssey of the Mind by holding activities attended by large groups of people.

The Odyssey of the Mind World Finals has not yet been cancelled.  The VOICES Board has considered options for teams that want to continue competing this season as well as those teams that only desire to showcase their performances. All options that require a team or teams to gather are suspended indefinitely.  Although a team meeting is far fewer in number, we must have a clear conscience in respecting OMERs and parents alike to avoid spreading the virus unknowingly. Please join us in doing our part in preventing the spread of the coronavirus in our communities.

That said, the state associations are considering another set of creativity challenges from CCI that teams can solve without gathering in person.  I will present this option to the VOICES Board for the regional boards to consider implementing at the regional level. We will provide more details as they become available.

As each region operates independently, the Regional Directors will contact coordinators regarding the possible tournament registration refunds, based on their expenses that cannot be recouped.  For those teams who registered for the State tournament, those registration fees will be returned.

Our top priority is the health and safety of our OMERs, Coaches, Families, and Volunteers.

I have never experienced a pandemic of this nature in my lifetime.  Together we will persevere.

Odyssey of the Mind will persevere.

Praying for you and your family’s health and well-being,


David Tsuda

Director, Virginia Association

Odyssey of the Mind ©