There is a door at the end of the Odyssey / Phoenix Corridor with a sign which reads "Only Enter with Permission" or something to that effect. To the left of that door is the Odyssey entrance. To the right is the Phoenix simulator's emergency exit. Space Center staff and volunteers know what's behind that "Enter With Permission" door - a costume / prop storage area. It sits right behind the Odyssey main viewer wall.
What many of today's current pool of volunteers and Voyager cadets don't know is what that area looked like and how it was used before the new Odyssey was built. The classroom containing the Odyssey and Phoenix was half of Central School's library when I started teaching there in 1983. In the mid 1980's it was used as the school's first computer / technology lab.
Then in 1988 I came up with this crazy idea of building a spaceship simulator. That room was available. Principal Stan Harward liked the idea and the fundraising and grant writing began. The first simulator was to go in the back of the classroom running along the wall starting where today's Odyssey Control Room is located. I raised more money than expected and build an addition to the school instead; the USS Voyager. The classroom was used for field trip lessons - our Discovery Room. My desk was at the front of the room.
Eventually the first Odyssey was built followed by the Phoenix. The front of the room was my 'office' / staff gathering / gossiping / socializing / mission briefing / area.
This is how the front of the room looked right before the Space Center closed for upgrading and renovation in 2012. Today's storage area is where Stacy is standing in the photo. The hobbit door leading to the Voyager is out of shot on the far left. You see my chair and computer etc.
The Phoenix wall is shown in this photo. Look right at the center of the photo and you'll see the Phoenix's front hatchway. The black door on the right is the Phoenix emergency exit.
That storage area was the nerve center of the Space Center for 23 years. This is where much of the imagineering took place. If only those walls could talk; oh the stories they could tell! Pause and appreciated the magic next time you step into that special place.
The Voyager II is Fine Tuned
The Voyager II at Renaissance Academy is 99% finished. We're in the polishing and fine tuning stage. I want to thank Alex Anderson, Isaac O., Kyle Herring, and Brent Anderson for the work they're doing to get the ship reading for practice missions. Alex and Isaac have spent dozens of hours working on the ship's programming.
Last week the Voyager's tactical system / main viewer was their top priority. "Mission Accomplished" I'm pleased to report. I can't wait to invite everyone to come and enjoy a mission on the new Voyager. I'd better get busy and write some new stories!
Already Bored with Summer? How About Coming to a Space Camp at the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center.