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NASA Invites Public to Celebrate Final Journey of Space Shuttle Atlantis

NASA Invites Public to Celebrate Final Journey of Space Shuttle Atlantis

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will host a series of events to celebrate Space Shuttle Atlantis’s historic final trip to its new home at the Visitor Complex on Friday 2nd November 2012.

Visitors are invited to be part of the once-in-a-lifetime ‘Atlantis – Celebrate the Journey’ event that will mark Atlantis’s last voyage. The space shuttle will make a 10-mile rolling journey from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) to the Visitor Complex atop the Orbiter Transporter System (OTS). The move concludes at the new $100-million permanent home under construction for the orbiter, which is set to open in summer 2013.

Launch Pad 39-A Kennedy Space Center

Opportunities to see Atlantis from two vantage points – the Visitor Complex and Exploration Park – are available during this unique event and four ‘Atlantis – Celebrate the Journey’ viewing packages are offered:

  • Atlantis Adventure Package: Includes Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex admission, a ticket and roundtrip transportation to Exploration Park featuring the opportunity to view and photograph Atlantis in 360 degrees from 11am to 3pm, an opportunity to see Atlantis travel along the roadway and enter the orbiter home from 5pm to 6pm and a KSC Up-Close: Launch Pad tour. The Launch Pad tour takes visitors a quarter-mile within the perimeter security fence of Launch Pad 39-A to enjoy close-up views of the 350-foot high launch pad. The tour also includes a new photo opportunity in front of the Flame Trench and drive-by views of Launch Pad 39-B, the VAB and mobile launcher platforms, and ends at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. Additional activities at Exploration Park include Space Shuttle Programme astronaut appearances, interactive exhibits, displays of spaceflight hardware from past, current and future programmes. Exhibitors scheduled to attend include: The Boeing Company, Sierra Nevada Corporation, SpaceX and XCOR Aerospace. Cost: $115 adult/$105 child (ages 3-11) plus tax.
  • Explorer Package: Includes Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex admission and a ticket and roundtrip transportation to Exploration Park featuring the opportunity to view and photograph Atlantis in 360 degrees from 11am to 3pm, and an opportunity to see Atlantis travel along the roadway and enter the orbiter home from 5pm to 6pm. Additional activities at Exploration Park include Space Shuttle Program astronaut appearances, interactive exhibits, displays of spaceflight hardware from past, current and future programmes. Exhibitors scheduled to attend include: The Boeing Company, Sierra Nevada Corporation, SpaceX and XCOR Aerospace. Cost: $90 adult/$80 child (ages 3-11) plus tax.
  • Lift-off Package: Includes Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex admission, an opportunity to see Atlantis travel along the roadway and enter the orbiter home from 5pm to 6pm, and a KSC Up-Close: Launch Pad tour, which takes visitors a quarter-mile within the perimeter security fence of Launch Pad 39-A to enjoy close-up views of the 350-foot high launch pad. The tour also includes a new photo opportunity in front of the Flame Trench and drive-by views of Launch Pad 39-B, the VAB and mobile launcher platforms, and ends at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. Cost: $75 adult/$59 child (ages 3-11) plus tax.
  • Rollover Package: Includes Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex admission with the opportunity to see Atlantis travel along the roadway and enter the orbiter home from 5pm. to 6pm. During the day, enjoy special exhibits as well as the Kennedy Space Center Tour, Shuttle Launch Experience, 3D IMAX space films, Astronaut Encounter, Exploration Space: Explorers Wanted and all exhibits. Admission also includes the US Astronaut Hall of Fame. Cost: $50 adult/$40 child (ages 3-11) plus tax.

In addition to the Atlantis viewing opportunities, the Visitor Complex will host an Astronaut Autograph and Memorabilia Show benefitting the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation. A ‘who’s who’ of space exploration – more than 40 astronauts and special guests – will sign autographs at the Kurt H. Debus Conference Facility, adjacent to the Rocket Garden. Each astronaut will have his/her own station and charge a fee for autographs. Guests can bring memorabilia to be signed, or choose from photos and memorabilia that will be available for purchase. Admission is $15 for adults and children.

Ticket Process

‘Atlantis – Celebrate the Journey’ requires a special ticket purchase. For more information visit KennedySpaceCenter.com.

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NEIL STEEDMAN has been a trade journalist, copywriter, editor and proofreader for 50 years, and News & Features Editor for ‘Irish Travel Trade News’ for the past 40 years.

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