04.27.2015
2015 Marks Record Year for Viewing Rocket Launches
along Florida’s Space Coast, with More than 20 Liftoffs Scheduled

 
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex to Offer Prime Viewing Experience for Launches from Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
 
Editor’s Note:
Click here to download b-roll of launches
 
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (April 27, 2015) KENNEDY SPACE CENTER – With 24 rockets scheduled to liftoff from Kennedy Space Center (KSC) and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) this year, 2015 will bring visitors and residents of the Space Coast the most launch viewing opportunities in nearly 20 years. Not since 1998 have more than 20 launch vehicles lifted off from the world-famous Space Coast.
 
In 2014, 16 launches brightened the skies in Central Florida, up from 10 each in 2013, 2012, and 2011. In all, more than 40 rocket launches have taken place at KSC/CCAFS since the last space shuttle launch, STS-135 Atlantis in July 2011, proving that the two Central Florida launch complexes do indeed remain “America’s Gateway to Space.”
 
 “This year is scheduled to be a record year for spaceflight, with more than 20 scheduled rocket launches, and we at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex plan to give visitors as many thrilling opportunities as possible to see, hear and feel a massive rocket thundering from the launch pad,” said Therrin Protze, chief operating officer for Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. “We recently added two new launch viewing sites, the Launch Complex (LC) -39 Observation Gantry, just 3.4 miles from the launch pads at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, and the NASA Causeway, just 4 miles from the launch pads, giving our guests a choice of four close-up locations from which to view a rocket launch.”
 
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will offer launch viewing opportunities for most 2015 launches (dependent upon time of the launch and other operational factors). Upcoming launches include:
 
·          April 27, 6:14 p.m. – A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the TurkmenAlem52E/MonacoSat to provide the first national satellite telecommunications system in Turkmenistan.
·         May 20 – A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the AFSPC-5 mission for the U.S. Air Force. Launch time to be announced.
·         June 16, 1:44 p.m. – A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the GPS IIF-10 satellite.
·         June 19, 1:51 p.m. – A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the CRS-7 mission to the International Space Station to deliver supplies.
 
Among the highlights of the 2015 launch schedule are six planned launches to deliver cargo to the International Space Station, as well as the first demonstration flight of the SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket (date TBD). The heavy-lift rocket is formed of three Falcon 9 rocket cores strapped together with 27 Merlin 1D engines firing at liftoff.
 
While Brevard County offers many beautiful beaches and scenic spots from which to view a rocket launch, only Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex offers guests excellent views of the launch pads as well as a number of value-added amenities such as live commentary by NASA TV and space experts, astronaut appearances, food and beverage concessions, convenient restrooms and of course, world-class attractions, exhibits and programs including the new Space Shuttle AtlantisSM, Shuttle Launch Experience®, KSC Bus Tour featuring the Apollo/Saturn V Center, the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, Astronaut Encounter, the Rocket Garden, and more. Additional programs, exhibits and guest speakers are often added for milestone launches, such as the December 2014 launch of EFT-1, the first flight of the Orion spacecraft. Please note, KSC Bus Tours and special interest tours may be altered or suspended on launch days.
 
For prime launch viewing, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex offers visitors a choice of the following sites (subject to availability and dependent upon time of launch and other operational factors):
 
LC-39 Observation Gantry:
Recently added to guests’ launch viewing options, the LC-39 Observation Gantry offers the closest public viewing opportunity of rockets on the launch pad and during lift off at just 3.4 miles from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. From here, guests can feel the force of the launch and hear the roar of the engines. This area features lawn and bleacher seating and live launch commentary. The package includes launch transportation, a light snack and a souvenir T-shirt. Please note, this site is only accessible by bus from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Launch Transportation Tickets to LC-39 Observation Gantry are available for $49 in addition to admission.
 
NASA Causeway:
Views from the NASA Causeway include an up-close view of the rocket on the launch pad and during liftoff. Guests at this location, just 4 miles from the launch pad, may feel shockwaves from the launch as they travel across the Banana River. This location includes live launch commentary and lawn or bleacher seating. The package includes transportation to and from the launch viewing site. Launch Transportation Tickets to NASA Causeway are available for $49 in addition to admission. To purchase tickets, call 855-475-8415.
 
Apollo/Saturn V Center:
The Apollo/Saturn V Center is located within Kennedy Space Center and is approximately 6 miles from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station launch pad. The viewing area features an open lawn and bleacher section overlooking the scenic Banana River. The area includes live launch commentary, food and retail available for purchase and indoor restroom facilities. Please note, this site is only accessible by bus from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Launch Transportation Tickets to the Apollo/Saturn V Center are available for $20 in addition to admission.
 
Space Shuttle AtlantisSM:
Located at the main Visitor Complex, launch viewing adjacent to Space Shuttle Atlantis is included in daily admission. The viewing area is approximately 6.7 miles from the launch pad and affords guests a view of the rocket once it clears the tree line. Bleacher seating and live launch commentary is provided.
 
Launch viewing is also available throughout Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex for the cost of admission only. Admission is $50 + tax for adults and $40 + tax for children ages 3-11.
 
Purchase your launch viewing tickets online at kennedyspacecenter.com or call 866-737-5235.
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, the new Space Shuttle AtlantisSM, Shuttle Launch Experience®, 3D IMAX® space films, Astronaut Encounter, Exploration Space®:  Explorers Wanted and many other interactive exhibits. Admission also includes the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, featuring historic spacecraft and the world’s most comprehensive collection of personal astronaut memorabilia (opens daily at noon; 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. 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.

Contact(s)

Andrea Farmer
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Email: afarmer@delawarenorth.com
Phone: 321-449-4318
Nancy Glasgow, 407-290-1060, ext. 104, nancy@bitner.com
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