Advertisement

Fun that's outta this world

A trip to Kennedy Space Center in Orlando, Fla.

A trip to Kennedy Space Center in Orlando, Fla.

February 03, 2009|By BRIGITTE GREWE / Pulse Correspondent

ORLANDO, Fla. - On a weeklong visit to Florida mid-winter, I was not only able to enjoy the contrasting warm weather of the Sunshine State from Hagerstown, but I also got to learn a little something out of the whole trip.

The Kennedy Space Center in Orlando, Fla., is home to national space shuttle launches. It is also home to NASA's Launch Services Program, which launches "satellites and robotic missions on journeys to learn more about our home planet and to unlock the secrets of the universe," according to NASA's Web site, www.nasa.gov.

I visited the Visitor Complex at Kennedy Space Center. It gives eager space lovers and interested guests a chance to understand NASA's upcoming plans and learn about the journey, arrival, exploration and discovery of space.

Upon my arrival before noon, my family and I decided to hit the IMAX Theater and watch a 30-minute show introducing all what NASA does and displaying scenes from outer space. The IMAX Theater was packed to the point where about every single seat was filled.

Advertisement

The atmosphere was as if a regular theater, popcorn and candy included. Everyone put on their 3-D glasses and watched astronauts explain about their missions in space and how they live and work in a deep space environment.

After the show, we decided to try out one of the only rides at the center. The ride simulated a space shuttle launch. Passengers entered a room where we watched a quick five-minute explanation of the ride, which caused everyone to become anxious by how dramatic and anticipating the narrator made it.

I was even beginning to get nervous that the ride was going to be intimidating. The ride was quick and all right. After riding countless Disney rides I've experienced better, but I supposed it was meant to be more educational than thrilling.

The biggest highlight of the trip was taking a bus tour of the entire Kennedy Space Center. The tour took us to three stops where there were educational movies, displays and more.

The bus stopped at the Apollo/Saturn V Center, the LC-39 Observation Gantry, and the International Space Center. Each center brought their own enlightening facts to its visitors.

On the tour, you could essentially see the launch pads that are actually put to launch rockets into space.

I learned about the next shuttle launch planned to take place at 7:32 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 12, by the STS-119/Discovery shuttle. The tickets for this launch are said to be selling fast; it would be an amazing experience. There are a number of missions and programs that NASA is trying to tackle within the next few years.

NASA is our future in space and it is said that teens and pre-teens are the future of outer space.

In our future, we will be able to travel into the galaxy and explore even more than we have already.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|