With the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11’s historic mission to the Moon in July of next year and in anticipation of the increased interest in space and to ensure the highest levels of service and amenities for guests, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex has a universe of new changes, enhancements, additions and improvements planned and currently underway.
“Two-thousand and nineteen is going to be another exciting year for us,” said Therrin Protze, COO of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. “We’ve been working hard to create new ways to enhance our guest experience as well as additional amenities and upgrades that will make a visit to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex even more memorable. Going forward, our focus continues to be STEM education: the opening of the new Astronaut Training Experience this year has been met with high praise and nearly sold-out bookings. Our public outreach continues to expand through new Title I school initiatives and other exciting programs.”
Dramatic Sense of Arrival
The adventure will begin the minute guests arrive at the visitor complex, with a brand new entranceway that immediately establishes a “sense of space.” The entrance design replicates the giant crawler-transporters that deliver rockets from the Vehicle Assembly Building to their launch pad. The stunning replica will ignite visitors’ excitement and curiosity and set the tone for a memorable visit.
A Galaxy of New Exhibits
The 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, which takes place in July of 2019, will be the pinnacle of an exciting year at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. A galaxy of wonder and exploration awaits guests at the Apollo/Saturn V Center, which is a stop on the KSC Bus Tour. The interactive exhibit and attraction focus on the Apollo Program from the first launch to the Moon landings. New exhibits, such as Moon Scape, will feature a Lunar Lander and augmented reality stations enabling guests to recreate the first steps to the Moon. And the focal point of the Apollo/Saturn V Center, a dramatically suspended Saturn V moon rocket, will be enhanced with projection mapping on its side, showing the iconic footage of the Moon landing. Other new experiences and interactive opportunities will allow guests to delve deeper into what many consider one of the most significant achievements of the 20th century.
Step. Power. Launch.
At the interactive piezoelectric experience at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Step. Power. Launch, three separate tile pads designed to replicate planets give guests the chance to participate in a new technology prototype. The energy generated by guests as they step on the tiles will send power to daily, virtual launches on digital towers throughout the park. The information gathered at the visitor complex will be used to develop technology that will one day be on roadways and sidewalks to generate energy for surrounding cities.
KSC Bus Tour Updates
The TV personality, public speaker and author Emily Calandrelli, a.k.a. The Space Gal will be the host of a new video shown on the KSC Bus Tour. Calandrelli is an MIT-engineer turned Emmy-nominated TV host, as a correspondent on Bill Nye Saves the World and an executive producer and host of Fox’s Xploration Outer Space. Guests will go “behind the scenes” more than ever before by “following” space guide Emily as she interviews NASA subject matter experts and explores fascinating details about past and future launches. This is the only way that the public is allowed access to restricted areas of Kennedy Space Center.
Dine With An Astronaut
Dining with astronauts is one of the most exciting experiences many have at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Perhaps most compelling is the opportunity to learn about their experiences first-hand. The popular program is being updated and refreshed for a new, more personalized guest experience and it will focus on the human elements and emotions of spaceflight. A new, themed location will add to the more intimate ambience and create an environment more suited to the event. Following the program, each guest will have the opportunity to take an individual photo with the astronaut.
New Concession Concepts
New, space-themed food outlets are available at the visitor complex. The existing Milky Way ice cream shop will feature an out-of-this-world new façade, complete with a panorama of the galaxy and premium, hand-dipped ice cream. The new Red Rock Grill, featuring self-service ordering, will offer a smorgasbord of speciality hot dogs and french fries.
Stay a Day or Two
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, inspiration and educational activities. These include the new Astronaut Training Experience® Exploring with Lockheed Martin, which opened in February 2018, as well as Heroes & Legends, featuring the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, presented by Boeing, the Kennedy Space Center Tour featuring the Apollo/Saturn V Center with an actual Saturn V moon rocket, Space Shuttle Atlantis®, Shuttle Launch Experience®, IMAX® A Beautiful Planet 3D and Journey To Space 3D films, Astronaut Encounter, Journey To Mars: Explorers Wanted, Science on a Sphere®, Rocket Garden, and Cosmic Quest.
Located only 45 minutes from Orlando, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex opens daily at 9 a.m. with closing times varying by season. Admission is $57 + tax for adults and $47 + tax for children ages 3 – 11. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex offers annual passes starting at $82 + tax for adults and $67 + tax for children ages 3 – 11. For more information, call 877-313-2610 or visit www.KennedySpaceCenter.com.