A cup of tea with Harrison
Harrison visits the Kennedy Space Centre
Harrison has just been on his dream two week holiday to Florida. Throughout the trip, mum Lindsey wrote a blog so we could keep up-to-date with what the family were up to. In her own words, here's how they got on at the Kennedy Space Centre...
Well, here we are again! We can't come to Florida and not visit the Space Center.
I heard on the news before we left that Titusville (just down the road from Kennedy) had unexpected heavy rainfall first thing this morning. It caused the residents problems getting to school and work. When we arrived around three hours later, there were still large puddles everywhere despite a temperature of low 80s.
This time we managed to book one of the 'Up Close' tours. On our previous visits they've always been fully booked. It was definitely a quiet day today.
A lot has changed since our last visit. The Astronauts Hall of Fame that used to be in a separate building on the way to the Space Center has now been brought on site and is being housed in the building where we had lunch with astronaut Wendy Lawrence a couple of years ago. Unfortunately the exhibition isn't opening until later on this year. A large education centre has been added to the complex; there are walking tour guides offering free talks at various attractions throughout the day and the food choices have also been improved.
We had about 1 1/2 hours before the tour was due to leave and as it was expected to last for around 2 1/2 hours, we decided to have lunch first. Instead of just a burger / pizza menu, there are now a good selection of salads available including 'make your own'. Harrison was very pleased to see that macaroni cheese was also on the menu.
Our tour wasn't very full so there was plenty of room on the bus for everyone to spread out. Unfortunately, a couple decided to sit immediately behind Harrison and me and started coughing and spluttering. As the bus was moving nobody was allowed to change seats. After a stop, Harrison moved forward to sit with Bernard. The last thing we need is for him to get a chest infection.
Doc was our tour guide and he was quite a character. He provided lots of interesting information interspersed with anecdotes. An ex-school teacher, he definitely had us all under control!
The Kennedy Space complex is also undergoing major changes away from the visitor attractions. The main administrative office is being demolished and a new seven storey one is being built next door. Some of the data centres are being knocked down as are other buildings.
They're trying to turn it from a 1960's development into a 21st century facility. The changes will offer opportunities for space programmes other than just the government ones. Blue Origin (Amazon's space project) is currently building a development facility on site.
We also saw part of a metal beam from the World Trade Center presented to the Kennedy fire service. They had sent volunteer fire fighters from this station to assist following 9/11.
Our tour ended at the Saturn V building and as we've been in there several times, we bypassed the initial film and went straight into the rocket hall. Again, there were some changes being made here too. Bernard and Harrison never tire of seeing Saturn V.
Once we arrived back at the main complex, Bernard and Harrison went to see a 3D IMAX film called 'The Beautiful Planet'. That's about all we had time for today because the park was closing at 6pm and the film ended at 6:20pm.