Consider yourselves warned: Robots are heading to the area.

Heritage High hosts the Tech Challenge East Bay Qualifier Robotics Tournament on Nov. 20 in the school's gym at 101 American Ave.

But before the Brentwood school can go heavy metal -- so to speak -- it needs sponsorships and volunteers. Already on board are Bishop-Wisecarver, USS-POSCO and Brittell Environmental Corp.

Spearheading the event is Robert Pardi, business/technology teacher. He said the robotics program needs help to pay for robotics kits and supplies, practice field elements, team uniforms, tournament registration fees, travel expenses (for regional and national competitions) and the creation of a special competitive underwater robotics program.

Pardi hopes the community rallies around this creative event, saying donors will be acknowledged. The bronze level ($5-$99) gets sponsor name on a T-shirt; silver ($100-$199) gets name on T-shirt and a program ad; gold ($200-$299) gets T-shirt name, half-page program ad and logo on team pit banner; and platinum receives ($500 and up) name and logo on shirt, full page ad and logo on pit banner.

Those interested can send donations to the school's HHS Robotics Club; tax ID is 753192233. For a look at last year's FTC Tournament, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUbwsGSHxLc

For more information, email pardir@luhsd.net or visit www.norcalftc.org or www.usfirst.org.

WORD UP: Once again, the Rotary Club of Brentwood doled out free dictionaries to hundreds of third-graders in far East County.

The Rotary's Theresa Coffman said the event "is a wonderful experience ... The children get so excited to receive their very own dictionary."

The schools that were treated to the free reference books were Brentwood, Gehringer, Iron House, Knightsen, Krey, Laurel, Loma Vista, Marsh Creek, Oakley, Pioneer, Ron Nunn and Vintage Parkway elementary schools.

THREE FOR THREE: Dozier-Libbey Medical High has hit a trifecta of sorts.

In a rare instance, the Antioch school's chapter of HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) has three presidents this year.

Instructor Cyndi Soraoka is president of the Cal-HOSA, on the board of directors and a member of the National HOSA competitive events committee.

Antonio Hernandez is a Dozier-Libbey senior, president of the Cal-HOSA state officers and representative for more than 3,600 student members. Hernandez is a national HOSA competitive event gold medalist and recently attended a leadership academy in Washington, D.C.

Rounding out the trio is senior Grace Primalia, who's president of the local HOSA chapter and a bronze medal winner in a state competitive event.

"I've been on the Cal-HOSA board for seven years and I don't know of any school that has had all three presidents at the same time," Soraoka. "I am honored that the Cal-HOSA membership put their confidence in us to lead the organization this year."

DINE & DANCE: Friends of Antioch High School Foundation hosts a dinner-dance at 5 p.m. Nov. 12 at the Sportsmen Yacht Club, 3301 Wilbur Ave. in Antioch.

The newly minted group was formed this past summer by nine AHS grads, ranging from the 1950s to the 1990s.

This is the group's kickoff event, which doubles as a fundraiser for the school. All proceeds benefit academic and extracurricular programs at AHS.

Louie Rocha, AHS principal and group member, said the event has a "high school homecoming theme, so guests can wear their letterman jackets/sweaters with '50s attire."

A welcome reception begins at 5 p.m. with dinner at 6. Live '50s music begins at 7:30 p.m. The Diablo Valley College Culinary Arts program is in charge of the four-course meal, with wine provided by Livermore's El Sol Winery. Event tickets are $50 per person. There are only 120 tickets available.

CANDY IS DANDY, BUT ...: As Halloween approaches, Dr. John Esterkyn is ready for a little buying spree.

The East County orthodontist will pay $1 per pound of those sugary treats coming our way on Monday.

For the past five years, Esterkyn has held a Halloween buyback program, but this is the first year he'll be matching the dollar per pound with the child's school. The win-win idea is Esterkyn's way of helping area schools.

The dentist hopes to collect a record amount of candy in his Antioch and Brentwood offices this season. "The more candy collected, the more money schools will receive," noted staffer Cristie La Vallee.

To participate in the buyback event, take all new and unopened candy -- up to 10 pounds per person -- to the Antioch office at 2390 Country Hills Drive or to 1145 Second St., Suite F, in Brentwood.

Drop-offs times are: 9:30 a.m. to noon and 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Nov. 2, 8 and 10 in Antioch; and 8:30 a.m. to noon and 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Nov. 1, 3, 7 and 9 in Brentwood.

For more information, call 925-754-3197 or 925-513-9320.

ANTIOCH HOMECOMING: It was a week filled with spirited days, a special breakfast, an energetic rally and a fine royal night for Antioch High during its traditional homecoming week. Kimberly Le was all smiles as she was named queen during halftime of the Antioch vs. Freedom football game. The homecoming court included Nadia Duenas, Crystal Kobierski, Alicia Palma, Christine Quecan and Mackinsey Russell.

School Bell is written by Trine Gallegos. If you have news you'd like to share in the column, contact her at trineg@att.net. You can also reach Judith Prieve at jprieve@bayareanewsgroup.com.