Contact Victor Williamson with your questions about simulator based experiential education programs for your school.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Free Stem Camp Tomorrow. An Update from Mystic Black Hills. We're Dodging hail floods - all in a good day. Independence Day Deadwood Style. Imaginarium Theater.

Free Stem Camp at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center Starts Tomorrow

     A free STEM camp sponsored by Stanford University's SPOKES starts tomorrow (Monday) at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center in Pleasant Grove. You can sign up for  at  The camp is open to students ages 12-16.                Several Renaissance Academy Space Academy students attended the Stanford camp last year and enjoyed it very much.  Here are a few pictures of them at work. 

The Troubadour From Wits End Too Cottage on Williams Street in Beautiful Deadwood, South Dakota

     The Troubadour coming to you again from Wits End Too Cottage in Deadwood, South Dakota.  One thing is for sure, there are no starship simulators in this neck of the wild west. 
I watch a glaze of confusion sweep across the good faces of the local folks here when I try explaining to them what I do for a living back in "Mormon Country".  

     We enjoyed the Independence Day Parade down Main Street. There was one band from a Lutheran school in Minnesota along with a good collection of local dignitaries and businesses.  The amount of candy gathered by kids during a Deadwood parade is only eclipsed by a night on the doors at Halloween.  A day of storms made even better with strong lightening, thunder and hail made the day even better. 

     My favorite "float" was from Danny's Plumbing Service. It was called the "Game of Thrones"............ Get it?  He sat on his plunger bedecked throne issuing orders while winning the favor of his subjects by tossing copious amounts of DumDums. 

     The horn on the Hawk Extreme Firefighters truck was loud enough to nearly part my spirit from my body.

     Our motoring through the mystic Black Hills included several good restful hours at the Rouges Gallery in Hulett, Wyoming owned by my sister and brother in law.  I enjoy sitting in the small lobby and swapping stories with the odd assortment of local characters who drop by.  Hulett has a population of 467 on the days when they're not bringing in the harvests. The population swells by a couple hundred or so tourists during the summers who drive by on their way to and from Devil's Tower just down the highway.    

     Last year the Williamson's gathered to have a picture taken in the Photo Emporium near Saloon #10.  

     Just the other day the weather took another turn to nasty (but exciting) with golf ball sized hail, tornado sirens, and flooding throughout the Hills. We found partial shelter with the locals under a gas station awning just off the highway. How often do you get that kind of excitement in Utah?
      It makes for a good summer to keep company with family and friends on lazy Deadwood afternoons.  Soon enough it will be time to return to Utah, but not yet.  

Imaginarium Theater
The Best Videoettes of the Week Edited for a Gentler Audience. Today, From Wits End Too Cottage in beautiful Deadwood, South Dakota.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

The Troubadour, Semi-Live From the Black Hills of Dakota. The Space Academy's Leadership Camp, A Great Time Had by All. Thank you for the Birthday Wishes. The CMSC is Cleaning House for the Big Move. Anything Interesting to You? The Imaginarium.

The Space Academy's June 24-27th Leadership Space Camp Staff and Cadets
     Renaissance Space Academy held its first space camp for the 2019 summer season last week running from June 24-27th with more to come in July and August.  This camp's focus was leadership training - preparing our cadets to be tomorrow's leaders. 
     From 8:00 - Noon each day the cadets were instructed by Major Vidinha, Renaissance Academy's middle school science teacher and a retired major in the United States Army.  The cadets spent several hours learning how to command and lead effectively.

The Academy Cadets in the gym learning to command a platoon and issue effective and clear orders
Time for a quick break before moving to their next activity
Saving the universe from those who wish us harm is hard work requiring a bit of time in the holodeck to unwind.
The June 24-27 Space Academy leadership Camp
     Proper instruction begins with clear learning objectives; then comes practice to enforce the learning and give it a practical application. The Space Academy follows this instructional strategy. 
     After lunch, the cadets were given mission objectives, a mission briefing, and then sent into the Academy's two state of the art starship simulators to put what they learned into practice.  

Lunch is over and now it's time for the cadets to put what they learned in the leadership classes under Major Vidinha  to the test in the Space Academy's two simulators: The Nighthawk and the Voyager

     Space Academy Leadership Camp cadets spent their afternoons in the Academy's two simulators: the Nighthawk and the Voyager.  The two ships were joined in the same mission with the small Nighthawk running short and daring side missions to compliment the Voyager's primary mission objective.   

The Renaissance Space Academy, where theory and practice meet preparing students for the wonders of what is to come
      The leadership space camp was an awesome start to the summer camp season.  
     The Space Academy experience is directed and taught by a gifted and talented faculty who have decades of experience running space camps. Six of the Academy's faculty are educators at two Utah charter schools, two of whom are former directors of Alpine School District's Christa McAuliffe Space Center.  We are proud of the program we've developed and welcome you to join us this summer for our unique space camp experience. 
Mr. Williamson

The Christa McAuliffe Space Center is Clearing House for the Big Move in April. Anything Interest You?

     The CMSC is clearing out some long term storage items today as they prep for the new building. This gives you a bit of a peek at history when you consider a 5 CD changer worked for some simulators, but others used the big whopper of 300 disks. You also see our bone yard of smoke machines and other various tools that served their time well before being put to rest.  Nostalgia definitely kicks in followed by excitement for what's to come.
     Much of this will be for sale on the Alpine School District Surplus site for those interested.
Contact James Porter for more information.

For the Next Two Weeks The Troubadour Will be Headquartered at Thunder Gulch in the Beautiful Town of Deadwood, South Dakota. 

My green and yellow John Deere (or Green Bay Packers) colored home on Williams Street

     The Troubadour will be headquartered out of my home (Thunder Gulch) in Deadwood, South Dakota for the next two weeks. Every year I need to return to my roots in the Black Hills to recharge and relax.  Thunder Gulch is full all summer with family and friends who, like me, have found refuge from life's trials and tribulations in the green, ponderosa pines of these ancient mountains. 

The Welcome Mat. Deadwood is only a few miles from Sturgis, home of the big motorcycle rally held every year.

     When we get bored of home projects we cross the street, go down a few stairs onto a parking structure, then down the elevator and step onto Deadwood's busy main street, a tourist mecca with old west gambling, shopping, restaurants, and main street shootouts twice a day as the sheriff goes after that cowardly Jack McCall, who shot Wild Bill Hickok right there in Saloon #10.   

      I've got my full set up taking up the dining room table. That's ok, we take our meals on the deck anyway. By the way, my brother in law is the artist (Bob Coronado) who does those rodeo posters you see behind my chair. 
     Now, If you'll set your eyes on the photo above the fireplace........ 

     We Dakota Williamson's had our picture took down at the Photo Emporium to go above the fireplace.  This is the clan all together, rascals and all.  We know our way around a six shooter and don't tolerate fools easily.     
     If you're having a hankering for an old west experience then I urge you to satisfy that itch in the Black Hills of Dakota.  


Thank You for the Kind Birthday Wishes

Thank you all for helping me into 61 years kindly, warmly, and gracefully

The Imaginarium
The Best Videoettes from Around the World Edited for a Gentler Audience

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Thorium Advisory Board Meets. The Space Academy's Cool New Entrance. The Space Academy Welcomes Sam Golding to the LDM Staff. Imaginarium Theater.

The Thorium Board Met in the USS Voyager's Briefing Room

The Thorium Advisory Board Met for Its Quarterly Meeting Last Week
     Thorium is the software used by experiential simulators flying the Space EdVentures' flag.  Thorium is the brainchild of Alex Anderson, who also does most of the programming. 
The Thorium Advisory Board consists of the directors (or their representatives) of the five Space EdVentures Centers; The Christa McAuliffe Space Center, Telos Discovery Space Center, Reality's Edge Space Center, Renaissance Space Academy, and the Lion's Gate Center.  Other members of the Board are Isaac Ostler and Crystal Anderson.
     This short video answers the question, "What is Thorium?"

     Of the several topics discussed the most exciting was the work of a German programmer who has programmed DNS lighting controls into Thorium.  The groups also discussed the universal "sandbox" concept of mission development along with the possible use of Thorium to track volunteer hours and advancements.

Look at the New Graphics on the Space Academy's Entrance Doors    

     Visitors to Renaissance Space Academy first see the name of the school as they drive up the road.  Another sign posted at the school's entrance directs visitors to the back parking lot and the entrance to the Space Academy

     At the end of the front parking lot is another sign directing traffic to the back of the school.

     The Nighthawk sits near the Space Academy's entrance.  The entrance is on the right of the Nighthawk.  Recently new signage was applied to the doors.  

      Bracken Funk designed the signs and pretty much covered all the bases when it comes to the Farpoint Universe. We have the Academy's logo on the top left. Under it is the Academy's motto which was inspired by the writings of  Mortimer Adler, who wrote the following in his 1940 book, "How to Read a Book".   

“Education: the central aim of which has always been recognized, from Socrates’ day down to our own, as the freeing of the mind through the discipline of wonder.” 

      The Academy's motto reads: "Our mission is to educate all minds using the Discipline of Wonder."   Under that are the hours of operation, the web site, and a little something I came up with.  "Imagination, Faster than Light". 
     The right door has the Terran Space Command logo and a welcome to Terran Space Command headquarters. Under that is the UN Logo for the unified space authority and finally the words "Serve, Inspire, Lead".  
     Visitors enter this door and directly on their right is the Voyager's Briefing Room. How easy is that?  

Mr. Williamson

Sam Golding Joins the Space Academy Staff

A few of the Voyager's staff and volunteers were on hand to welcome Sam to Team Voyager. Sam is sitting at the 2FX station next to Bracken Funk.

     Sam Golding got the news at the start of a Voyager private mission last Saturday. Sam was sitting next to Bracken at the 2FX station when Bracken offered the job,  "Hey Sam, how about joining our paid staff for the LDM program this school year."  Sam accepted the offer and that is that. Sam and Livy Charles will be taking the places of Spencer Baird and Jensen Caldwell who will be leaving for LDS missions in September.  Sam and Livy will join Ethan, Brad, and Dylan working the Young Astronaut Long Duration Missions from 3:30 - 6:00 P.M. 

Imaginarium Theater
The best videoettes from around the world edited for a gentler audience.