Tuesday, January 22, 2013

space jammin at the space center (part 1)

A few weeks ago,  my friends and I decided to go to Chicago for my friend's birthday. For a variety of reasons, the plans fell through and I came to the grim realization that I was broke. Since my fella had already taken the long weekend off work, we decided we shouldn't let this rarity of 4 days off in a row go to waste. We opted to go instead on a mini road trip to Huntsville, AL. [Tangent: I mean, isn't Huntsville the Chicago of the South? OK, probably not, but it still seemed like a good place filler and it was only an hour and a half drive away!]

Our friends Brandon and Laura live in Huntsville and we have been talking for a while about going to visit their new home, their new daughter and their dog, Maggie. Neither of us had ever been there so it seemed like a good plan. Also, my boyfriend has a huge nerd boner for anything that is space related, so we decided a trip to the space center was in order. [Tangent: It was just icing on the cake that Laura's mom could get us in free if we acted like family members because she is a NASA employee. As previously stated, I am semi broke, so this was very budget friendly.] 

When I was wee, I was obsessed with the idea of going to space camp (which is held at the space center for people with parents who love them). I'm not exactly sure why I was so intrigued by the space because I wasn't really into science at all. Space Camp was always a the grand prize on Double Dare, so I probably just thought every kid needed to go as a rite of passage. [Tangent: Perhaps as they were riding their Huffy bike and singing into their karaeoke machine while wearing their LA Lights high tops...ya know...Living the Mark Summers dream.] Likely, I had deluded myself into thinking that you actually got to go up in a rocket or at the very least eat astronaut ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Either scenario was very attractive to young Kimmie...and adult Kimmie for that matter. 

dippin dots are the ice cream of the future, ya know?
After talking to Laura [who actually went to space camp as a child and is thus a certified rock star in my book] and grilling her about the specifics, I learned you didn't actually sleep in a rocket or get to walk on the moon or anything...so I felt slightly less jipped in my childhood.  It was basically just sleepaway camp where you could learn about the universe. Also, the Space Camp building itself, looked a bit like a silo flanked by stacks of toilet paper- so some of the magic was definitely diminished. 

As with most museums, the space center has rotating exhibits that may or may not have anything to do with the exploration of the milky way. [Tangent: Apparently their last one was about wooly mammoths or something.] I was kinda disheartended when I learned the exhibit we would be viewing was all about Math. Theoretically, t seemed terrible, but in execution, it was amazing. [Tangent: There were lots of video game type set ups with cycling and snow boarding where you actually manually cycled and there was a hand cycle setup for gimps like me! It's the little things like this that make me happy and then immediately feel terribly out of shape.] It was unclear how everything related to math, but we did odd things like take 360 degree photos of ourselves and viewed our profile using heat energy. 

reason #928390048 I love Jamie. He is a master of shadow puppets
 Trust I am just scratching the surface of our trip...so tomorrow I will likely have more interesting things to say... Stay tuned.  Until then, I'll leave these here for ya..


  1. we went to the space center two years ago and loved it! here is my post on it:
    i can't wait to see what else you did. i don't remember what the special exhibit was when we were there. the dinosaur one was about to open. did you do the imax? we saw one about the hubble and it totally blew my mind.

  2. I already read it! Me and jamie checked it out after our visit! I wish I had taken pics at our other stops around town. We ate as some yummy restaurants, but I am still awkward when taking pics of my food. We didn't ride any of the rides, because it was a little cold out, but we walked around the rocket park and checked everything out.


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