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Debbie Sharp
Johnson Space Center, Houston

Marlene Brown
The Children’s Museum
(315) 724-6129

Opening Set for NASA Exhibits at Utica Children’s Museum
NASA and the Children's Museum of History, Natural History, Science and Technology in Utica, N.Y., will unveil two new exhibits at the museum in a grand opening ceremony 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. EDT June 10.

News media are invited. Participants in the ceremony will include Astronaut Ed Lu. Congressman Sherwood Boehlert also plans to attend if Congress' schedule permits. Other elected officials and NASA representatives have also been invited to attend. The participants will be available to media for questions.

An exhibit called "Why We Explore" will be unveiled. That will be followed by a special media tour of an interactive exhibit called "Space Station Imagination" hosted by Lu, a veteran Space Station astronaut. Lu, who spent six months aboard the International Space Station in late 2003 and considers Webster, N.Y., and Honolulu, Hawaii, his hometowns, will be available for interviews. More detail on the day's plans includes (all times Eastern):

10:30 a.m. -- Press Conference and Exploration Exhibit Unveiling The 2000-square-foot exhibit, "Why We Explore", was designed by a team from NASA's Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, OH. The exhibit, to be housed on the museum's 4th floor, provides an overview of the history and future of exploration. It includes a special tribute to New York astronauts. An interactive computer timeline takes users through the first century of flight. Video programming provides a glimpse into NASA plans for future space exploration.

11:10 a.m. -- Private "Space Station Imagination" Tour Media and special guests will be escorted on a tour of the Space Station Imagination exhibit. Lu will be on hand to answer questions. The two 48-foot trailers housing the traveling, interactive exhibit will be on display at the museum through July 7. Coordinated by NASA as part of the agency's nationwide community outreach program, the exhibit provides a glimpse of what it is like to live and work aboard a space station.

11:30 a.m. Luncheon Reception and Astronaut Ed Lu Interview Availability In 2003, Lu became the first American to launch as the Flight Engineer of a Russian Soyuz spacecraft and the first American to launch and land on a Soyuz spacecraft. Lu spent six months aboard the International Space Station as Flight Engineer and NASA ISS Science Officer for the seventh Station crew. He also is a veteran of two previous Space Shuttle flights and has amassed a total of almost 206 days in space on his missions.

The Children's Museum of History, Natural History, Science & Technology is located at 311 Main St., Utica, N.Y. It is open five days a week 9:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. It is closed Wednesdays and Sundays. The museum and trailer exhibit are wheelchair accessible.

For more information on the Children's Museum, visit:

For Lu's complete biographical information, visit:

For more information on Space Station Imagination, visit:

For more information on NASA and its programs, visit:

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