Space Tour Part 1: The U.S. Space & Rocket Center

The Williams family has some bonafide space geeks in it and this summer began one of our family bucketlist items:  To visit all of the Space Centers across the U.S.  There are thirteen NASA Visitor Centers in all, and we started where rockets began at The U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

Unfortunately, we were visiting during the time of COVID, so many of the hands-on experiences were closed.  Huntsville is the home of Space Camp, so we should have seen kids in camp groups heading off to simulators.  Instead, Space Camp and The Rocket Center had a charity drive going to save their programs for the future.  The programs are now safe, but if you want to donate, you can here.

The Rocket Center is where you go to learn about, well, rockets.  From military rockets to the early stages of Saturn 1, you can walk past it all in the Rocket Park.  Then step inside the Saturn V Hall to follow the path of Wernher von Braun as he creates and tests the rocket that would take man to the Moon.  Here you can see one of the three remaining Saturn Vs, along with a mock up of the SkyLab, lunar vehicles and a real moon rock.

A close up zoom of a Moon Rock. I swear!

Our Rocket Center adventure took us about three hours to complete, but would have been longer if the rest of the experiences were open.  Compared to Kennedy Space Center, this is a great museum to learn about the science and experimentation behind rocket boosters.

It takes sixty-five thousand errors before you are qualified to make a rocket.

-Wernher von Braun

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