The official student news site of Westview High School

The Nexus

The official student news site of Westview High School

The Nexus

The official student news site of Westview High School

The Nexus

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Cubing Club hosts second annual cubing competition

Ella Jiang
Franklin Pham (11) collects scores at the Cubing Favorites competition, May 25. The competition ran for 10 hours from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.


Entering the gym, May 25, the rattle of shuffling Rubik’s cubes reached every corner of the room. People of all ages, chaperoned and adult, waited for their turn to be called to the row of desks lined with Stackmat timers, a special timing device mandated by the World Cube Association (WCA) to verify each cuber’s speed. In the meantime, competitors sat at tables, practicing and studying various algorithms.

“Anyone can solve Rubik’s Cube,” cubing club president Franklin Pham (11) said. “Because of that, anyone is able to join the community. Whether you’re 6, 7, 8 years-old, whether you’re a teenager or an adult, it’s a community where people can come together to share their interests and compete.”

Cubing club held its second annual Westview Cubing Favorites, May 25, in partnership with the WCA with events starting from 2x2x2 cubes up to 7x7x7 cubes, along with other events for Pyraminx, Megaminx, Square-1 and Skewb cubes. Lead organizers Pham and Trey Vu (11) were among a team of two other organizers and five delegates from WCA.

The event drew in 141 competitors with student volunteers helping run the competition and keep track of logistics. Pham said this kind of turnout is spurred by the active communication line WCA keeps with an internationally large network of cubers.

Pham had attended plenty of competitions himself but said that this competition was different from typical cubing events due to the wider audience of cubers it catered to.

“Normally, competitions have only three or four different events and those events have multiple rounds throughout the competition,” Pham said. “Our competition, specifically, was to help people qualify for regional championships and national championships. So, we had every single event there but we only had one round of everything.”

Cubing competitions can be held almost anywhere as long as the WCA can officiate them, but creating a functional event is the more complicated part, according to Pham.

“Anyone can just email the [WCA], but the process of actually putting the event together takes a lot of communication [and] planning in general,” he said. “[You] have to have a lot of plan A’s and plan B’s when something fails. There’s a lot of multitasking since there are so many things going on. You just have to balance everything and try to be cool during times of stress.”

With experience gained from last year’s cubing favorites, Pham said this year’s event involved more organization and preparation.

“Last year, one of the main problems we had was communication,” he said. “[For example,] to use the gym, we had to pay the custodian fee since there’s an hourly rate for them to be there. Last year, we were really cutting it close because we had to deliver the check for the custodian fee prior to the event, but we only got that check in a day before the event actually started. Since this is the second time around, we’ve gotten more familiar with the logistics of planning everything. We identified what went wrong last time and tried to focus more on those areas this time around.”

With the WCA acting as a conduit for cubers around the world, Pham said that even local competitions have given him the opportunity to meet new people.

“I’ve been able to meet people from Los Angeles and northern California,” Pham said. “It’s fun meeting new people and sharing the passion for the thing you love.”

For Pham, holding a competition at Westview meant being able to make cubing more accessible to locals.

“We just thought it’d be fun to have a competition at Westview,” Pham said. “Normally, we would have to travel to different schools to compete, but having it at Westview just really makes it easier for those in our cubing club and those in the nearby area to compete without having to travel.”

Pham said that his overall goal was to replicate the kindness he was shown when first entering the cubing sphere.

“It’s really important to me to help out and spread cubing to other people who may have just started,” Pham said. “Because the cubing community was so welcoming to me when I first joined, it’s rewarding to give back to the community that has given so much to me.”


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Ella Jiang
Ella Jiang, News Editor

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