My NASA Social trip @ Kennedy Space Center

 In NASA, NASA Social

From December 1-3, 2015, I was among 50 lucky people who applied for “NASA Social” media credentials and were invited to attend a special 3-day “NASA Social‬” event at Kennedy Space Center (KSC)/Cape Canaveral leading up to the planned Dec. 3 ULA/Orbital ATK unmanned re-supply launch to the International Space Station. It was a dream come true for me, as a life-long space enthusiast and amateur astronomer.

While the planned Dec. 3 launch was scrubbed due to bad weather and I had to fly home on Dec. 4, I wasn’t upset. I had just experienced a rare grand tour of Kennedy Space Center & Cape Canaveral and stood where a few lucky outsiders have stood before. You can’t buy the tour we were on! We visited restricted-access areas, spoke with NASA engineers responsible for a variety of incredible work (past, present and future), met NASA’s Deputy Administrator Dr. Dava Newman (NASA 2nd in command), met NASA KSC’s Director Bob Cabana, heard insider tidbits & history lessons from the retired NASA employees who helped escort our groups, and so much more…

Before I continue, you can search for hundreds of our group’s social media posts related to our experiences by searching for the “NASASocial” hashtag on FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTubeGoogle+FlickrVine and more.

In addition to this article, you can find a variety of my posts on the following sites:
https://www.facebook.com/BackyardAstronomyGuy
https://www.twitter.com/BackyrdAstroGuy
https://www.instagram.com/backyardastronomyguy
https://www.flickr.com/photos/backyardastronomyguy/albums
https://www.youtube.com/user/BackyardAstronomyGuy

Even though the Dec. 3 United Launch Alliance (ULA)/Orbital ATK rocket launch was scrubbed due to bad weather and I had to fly home before the next attempts, I visited sites throughout Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral that few civilians ever get to see first-hand, and I feel truly privileged and honored to have been invited by NASA to see it all first-hand, and in-turn share my experiences and excitement with all of you!

The history of the U.S. space exploration program is amazing, and there will hopefully be “boots on Mars” in the 2030’s. I saw some of the work that NASA and their commercial partners are doing to prepare for those next big steps in human space travel, originating from U.S. soil once again.

As an applicant to be a 2016 NASA Solar System Ambassador, I hope to be able to spread my excitement for space exploration to more people in and around my community through volunteering efforts.

Let’s start the tour! 

Flickr Photo Album (my 527 iPhone pics)
Flickr Photo Album (my 1,377 Canon 60D pics)

And here is a YouTube playlist of 35 videos either captured during my NASA Social trip or from official NASA channels related to our events and planned rocket launch:

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