Astronauts Share Highlights of their Missions with Guests to Mark the One-Year Anniversary of Space Shuttle AtlantisSM
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex celebrated the one-year anniversary of the $100-million Space Shuttle AtlantisSM attraction with Atlantis Astronaut Adventure featuring 12 NASA astronauts, all of whom flew on the historic orbiter.
The 12 Atlantis astronauts – Clayton Anderson, Bo Bobko, John Creighton, Charlie Walker, Hoot Gibson, Fred Gregory, Ken Ham, Mike McCulley, Jerry Ross, Brian Duffy, Bob Springer and Dan Tani – participated in a first-of-its-kind Lunch with an Astronaut featuring an astronaut at each table.
In addition, the astronauts appeared throughout the day in Astronaut Encounter at the Visitor Complex. Each astronaut gave a 30-minute “Mini Mission Recap” highlighting their missions aboard Atlantis.
“It’s an amazing experience to be able to stand in a room with astronauts, I mean they’ve gone to space and that is, to me, the most incredible experience,” said Tonya George of Merritt Island, Florida, who was in attendance at today’s events.
Veteran NASA astronaut Robert “Hoot” Gibson, one of the astronauts participating in the day’s events, spoke about space exploration saying, “With the International Space Station we’ve got American astronauts that are orbiting the Earth right now, right at this moment, every day of the year.” He added, “I think we have a bright future in exploration. The SLS, Space Launch System, is going to give us a capability to go beyond orbit.”
Space Shuttle Atlantis has become a “must-see” experience for Central Florida tourists following its grand opening on June 29, 2013. Guests experience the inspiring accomplishments of the U.S. space shuttle program at the unique 90,000-square-foot attraction where visitors get nose to nose with a real spaceflown orbiter. The Atlantis orbiter is displayed as if floating in space, as if departing from the International Space Station – the only space shuttle orbiter in the world exhibited this way. 
About Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex brings to life the epic story of the U.S. space program, offering a full day or more of fun and educational activities, including the Kennedy Space Center Tour featuring the Apollo/Saturn V Center with an actual Saturn V moon rocket, Shuttle Launch Experience®, 3D IMAX® space films, Astronaut Encounter, Exploration Space: Explorers Wanted and many other interactive exhibits. The new $100 million home for Space Shuttle AtlantisSM opened June 29, 2013. Admission also includes the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, featuring historic spacecraft and the world's largest collection of personal astronaut memorabilia, which opens daily at noon and closing times vary by season. Only 45 minutes from Orlando, Fla., Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex opens daily at 9 a.m. with closing times varying by season.  Admission is $50 + tax for adults and $40 + tax for children ages 3-11. The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex offers annual passes starting at $75 + tax for adults and $60 + tax for children ages 3-11. For more information, call 877-313-2610 or visit www.KennedySpaceCenter.com.


Andrea Farmer
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Email: afarmer@delawarenorth.com
Phone: 321-449-4318
Nancy Glasgow, 407-375-2433, nancy@bitner.com
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