Visit SpaceCampUtah.org to learn more about the Space Education Centers in Utah. Visit SpaceGuard.org and ProjectVoyager.org for information on joining a simulator based school space and science club.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Thoughts on the Week as We Blaze Forward..

Hello Troops,
It’s 58 degrees outside! I think we can nearly, almost if not certainly proclaim - without too fine a point, yet steadfastly with room for doubt, but firm with conviction without getting too carried away that Winter weather is behind us. Wouldn’t you agree or nearly so, perhaps?

The Space Center is getting more private mission bookings and the last two overnight camps were full - all of which makes me happy. Happy is defined as a steady stream of money coming in and not as much going out; such a situation means we are running well into the black. We need to raise as much money as possible so I can purchase a $27,000 new portable planetarium to take the place or our aging Starlab. That poor dome is so full of holes you’d swear you were looking up into the night sky from some alien planet.

Oh, I can’t forget the remodeling of the Voyager. New computers, new front screens and new chairs.... sigh..... Speaking of chairs, the nice modern chairs I bought for the Voyager nearly ten years ago are breaking one by one over a steady stream of months. We lost one yesterday when the Engineer step down from the Engineering section onto the Right Wing chair and broke a section of the plastic off.

It seems like every week something new breaks but that is the nature of equipment under heavy use.

We had network problems in the Odyssey and Magellan during the overnight camp and Saturday private missions. That’s something else that needs to be addressed. Numont University in Salt Lake City nearly finished the new Odyssey controls before their term ended. Matt Long and the Programming Guild will take what they’ve done and finish them up. I’m hoping new controls on a stable platform like Cocoa will eliminate many if not all of the Odyssey’s issues.

I want to thank all the new volunteers that recently finished their five observations and are now eligible to volunteer at the Center. I signed another young man in yesterday afternoon. These new volunteers are full of drive and enthusiasm. I need you old timers to stand close to them and hopefully some of their energy will transfer into you. And once again a pat on the back to our current volunteers. You guys keep the Center open with your many hours of unpaid time.

Their are several factors responsible for the Center’s success. Among the top five are the outstanding volunteers and staff, all of whom (including the paid staff) donate hours of volunteer time each month. I’m grateful and urge you to keep coming! We are moving into our busiest time of the year and, well, you know. We can’t do this without you.

And now I’ll stop because If I write too much I’ll lose half the Blog’s readers (many of my staff continue to remind me that I write too much and when I do they won’t read it. What is with this younger generation? So many, but not all as I've been reminded, seem to have the attention span of a goldfish!)

Mr. Williamson
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