Museum Exhibit Part of International Space Development Conference

The National Space Society (NSS) wrapped up its 36th annual International Space Development Conference (ISDC) Monday in St. Louis, the birthplace of the Mercury and Gemini spacecraft that propelled the U.S. into manned space exploration.  The ISDC was hosted by the local NSS chapter, St. Louis Space Frontier, and held in the historic St. Louis Union Station hotel and convention center.  A full agenda of presentations attracted attendees and exhibitors from around the world, and St. Louis aerospace education organizations were there to support the weekend’s activities.

Some of the exhibitors on Saturday included:The Greater St. Louis Air & Space MuseumMissouri Aviation Historical SocietyThe Space Museum Bonne Terre Missouri, and Mac’s Old Team, among others, provided exhibits at the conference.  Exhibits were available daily during the conference days Friday-Sunday, and lunch sessions included keynote speakers NASA Space Shuttle Astronaut Dr. Linda Godwin, Gemini and Apollo Astronaut and retired USAF General Thomas Stafford and World View Enterprises CEO Jane Poynter. Of special interest was the Saturday Panel Presentation and Luncheon with members of Mac’s Old Team, a group of St. Louis-based McDonnell Aircraft engineers who helped design, build and launch the Mercury and Gemini spacecraft at the dawn of the U.S. manned space program. More from Saturday’s Mac’s Old Team program will be featured in an upcoming story.

Youth Experience Flight During Aviation Summer Camp

A group of middle school students experienced flight and visited St. Louis Downtown Airport facilities Friday while attending the annual Ranken Technical College Adventure Academy summer camp.  Fifteen students and their counselors arrived at the Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum around 10am and prepared to take their Young Eagle Flights in general aviation aircraft.  The four aircraft, pilots and ground crews were provided by members of EAA Chapter 64, also based at the airport.  Over the next several hours, the students flew over the St. Louis riverfront and learned about aircraft design and construction while touring the museum between flights.  After lunch, the students visited the air traffic control tower and airport fire station.