By Ron Sparkman| @UpportunityU
Earlier this year I was on a vacation/house hunting trip with a friend of mine to the Denver area, when it was suggested that we take a trip to Colorado Springs. After a short drive, and a bit of contemplation on if I really wanted to endure snowy winters similar to or worse than my youth, we passed by a sign that read “Discovery Center at the Space Foundation“. Immediately I hopped online and found that Colorado Springs wasn’t just the home of Pike’s Peak, Garden of the Gods, and not one but TWO space museums (the other being Peterson Air and Space Museum), but it’s also the home of the Space Symposium as well. It seemed like the decision was made for me–it was–and I moved here in July. Since then, I’ve been able to visit the museum on a few different occasions and each time I’ve had an amazing time. Walking through the place, I consistently said to myself “I wanna work here someday.” Outside of NASA, I can’t think of any museum more perfect than this place. My heart pumps every time I walk in the door, especially when an Astronaut is visiting or there’s some other new event. The foundation is devoted entirely to the education and promotion of space; a dream for space enthusiasts of all ages.
The main focus of the Space Foundation is their commitment to educating the public at large in a fun way. Video games, lunch with an astronaut, school art contests with contestants from around the world…all these events show their dedication to getting people involved in space. Contained within the Northrop Grunman Science Center, is the crown jewel of learning, Science on a Sphere. Projectors shine on a sphere and showcase every major heavenly body in our solar system. Want to see Enceladus? No problem. Titan? Coming right up. My hat is off to the staff of hosts for these presentations as well. Those folks are top-notch, well educated, and primed to answer any questions about our solar system. Both times there were some very bright kids in the audience asking and even answering questions about the stars. There is hope for the future!