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NASA helps celebrate Centennial of Flight in North Carolina
NASA will unveil a comprehensive new Centennial of Flight exhibit next week at the Festival of Flight 2003, May 19-25, in Fayetteville, N.C.
The Festival of Flight is the first official event to use NASA's new exhibit, during the national countdown to the100th anniversary of the Wright brothers' historic powered flight this December. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration has played a role in advancing the science of flight since 1915 with the establishment of its founding organization, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics.
During the weeklong Aviation Exposition at the Festival of Flight, NASA will showcase many of its innovative aerospace achievements in three locations. The main NASA exhibition space is twenty thousand square feet of the Crown Center Coliseum renamed NASA Center for this event. There visitors will get a feel for how NASA has helped change our daily lives and how NASA researchers and astronauts are working to improve our future, by better understanding the Earth, exploring the universe and searching for life.
The new NASA Centennial of Flight exhibit called "Powering Flight, Powering Dreams" will feature interactive displays, a micro-gravity demonstrator, airplane and spacecraft models and a number of real-life NASA scientists and engineers all intended to inspire the next generation of explorers. With the help of NASA educators, school groups will have the chance to build their own flying machines, including helicopters, kites, rockets and airplanes. Adults and kids will be able to check out a moon rock, operate a wind tunnel and take home a NASA souvenir.
In the parking lot of the NASA Center, visitors will also be able to enjoy three outdoor NASA exhibits. They'll have the chance to experience what space travel might be like four decades from now, take a walk through the "solar system" to appreciate its enormous size and learn more about aeronautics with the help of 10 unique work stations.
In addition, on NASA Day, May 20, the agency's new Associate Administrator for Education, Dr. Adena Williams Loston, and Astronaut Jeff Ashby will make special appearances at the Festival. Ashby is a veteran of three Space Shuttle flights who last year commanded STS-112, the 9th assembly flight of the International Space Station.
NASA will also have a presence in two other exhibit areas. A "Women in NASA" display will grace Heritage Hall. Plus in the Aviation Hall visitors will be able to see and operate a NASA flight technology demonstrator, a computer simulator similar to a future plane they may some day fly.
The Festival of Flight is the first of six major Centennial of Flight celebrations in which NASA will play a major role. NASA will also participate in observances in Dayton, Ohio; New York, N.Y.; Oshkosh, Wis.; Los Angeles, Calif.; Long Beach, Calif.; and Kitty Hawk, N.C.
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