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

Sunday, April 30, 2023

Curious About the Starship Simulators outside of Utah? Watch this Video About One of Our Sister Ships, the IKS Marvel in Michigan. Audrey Hendriksen's Short Documentary on the Space Center. Imaginarium Theater

The Bridge of the IKS Marvel. Dansville, Michigan

People are surprised to learn there are 8 starship simulators very similar to the 14 Space EdVentures simulators we have in Utah County outside of Utah.  They are part of the Dream Flight Adventures Network created by Gary Gardiner.  

Gary spent many hours of his teen years attending both overnight and summer space camps at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center in the 1990's.  That's where he got "hooked" on experiential simulator based education. His goal was to create a similar program in Pennsylvania where he settled with his family.  Today, Dream Flight Adventures has 8 simulators in two states, the District of Columbia, and one overseas simulator in Venezuela. 

Recently the IKS Marvel was highlighted in a Michigan educators video.  The teachers and administrators do an excellent job describing what we do with our simulators and I encourage everyone to take a minute and watch the video.  Let's celebrate the work of our sister simulators and wish them the very best as we all work together to create a space faring civilization.     

The IKS Marvel

Location:  Dansville Elementary School — 1264 Adams St, Dansville, MI 48819

Flight Directors: Angela St.Amant

Crew Complement:  32

Plan a Visit:  The IKS Marvel primarily flies missions for students at Dansville Elementary School, but it will welcome visitors from other schools, districts, and groups from its surrounding community.  Please stay tuned to our blog for updates.

Launch Date:  May 2019

The Video on the Marvel and its Educational Team

Audrey Henriksen's Short Video Project on the Christa McAuliffe Space Center

I'm not one to draw attention to myself or to stand out in a crowd. I prefer the quiet life, spending time doing my favorite hobby - sitting quietly. It has been mentioned that I'm humble to a fault and I humbly agree. However.... there are times when one must step out beyond the cloistered walls of room 304 to promote causes dear to one's heart and recently that is what I did at the request of everyones favorite Blue Shirt, Audrey Henriksen.

Audrey was tasked by a professor to make a short video on a topic of her choosing. The Space Center was Audrey's topic which was no surprise to anyone. Audrey contacted me and asked if I'd be willing to step before the camera and be interviewed. Of course my first reaction was to politely decline but considering that everyone owes Audrey a favor, or two, or three I happily accepted the request.

The finished video is below. Audrey gave permission for it to be posted to The Troubadour for all to enjoy. Audrey - Job Well Done!

The Imaginarium

The Best Videos From Around the World Edited for a Gentler Audience

Sunday, April 23, 2023

The Media Department at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center Launches. Learning to Code is Important to our Voyagers. Infini-D is Ready to Start This Year's Infini-D League


The Christa McAuliffe Space Center's Media Department, under the command of Commander Hayden, held its inaugural meeting on Saturday, April 14th from 10:00 - 11:30 A.M. Also attending was Sector Chief JJ from Section 31. The creation of the Media Department marks a significant step forward in the Starfleet's mission to explore the galaxy.

The Media Department, comprised of a group of elite CMSC Voyager cadets (and they are looking for more), is tasked with producing sophisticated imagery, computer-generated and real-time maps, and diagnostic starship operational readings to be displayed on starship tactical screens. The starships, whose home port is Starbase Williamson near the Outer Rim: Falcon, Magellan, Cassini, Phoenix, Galileo, and Odyssey - will benefit from this department's work. The imagery this team will provide will give the necessary data a ship's command crew needs to operate a starship safely and efficiently in any situation.

During the meeting, Commander Hayden addressed the group, emphasizing the importance of their work in the broader context of Starfleet's mission to explore and expand humanity's understanding of the universe.

"We are the eyes and ears of the command crew," Commander Hayden said. "Our work is essential to the success of any mission, and I have every confidence that this team will meet and exceed expectations in the years to come."

The cadets, eager to begin their work, spent the remainder of the meeting discussing their individual areas of expertise and how they could best collaborate to produce the highest-quality imagery and data possible. They also discussed potential challenges they may face in their work, including time constraints and unforeseen technical difficulties.

Despite these challenges, the Media Department is poised to make a significant contribution to Starfleet's mission. Their work will enable the command crew to make informed decisions in real-time, improving the safety and efficiency of starship operations. With the skills, expertise, and dedication of the cadets comprising the Media Department, the future of Starfleet's mission looks brighter than ever before.

Are you interested in joining the Media Department at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center? We need your willingness to learn and desire to serve. And how cool is it to know that your work could be seen by the thousands who fly in our starships every month. Contact Mr. Williamson for more details.

The Farpoint Voyager's at Renaissance Academy's The Space Place Work on Learning Computer Code

The CMSC Voyagers are joined by the Farpoint Voyagers in learning computer coding and starship media creation. Every Saturday morning from 8:30 - 9:30 A.M. members of the Farpoint Voyager's meet at Renaissance Academy to work on their coding skills. Google's CS First provides the curriculum. The cadets are using SCRATCH to create computer games. Yesterday, the cadets began making escape games.

Calling All Voyagers in Grades 6-9!  The Infini-D League is Starting.  Teams will be Formed.  We Need You!


Infini-D League is coming on April 24th! 🚀


Are you ready for the most thrilling and exciting competition of the year? The Infini-D League missions are back and better than ever before! This year's competition promises to push the students' skills to the limit, testing their abilities to work together and overcome challenges. 

🗓️ Dates: April 24th - May 19th

👩‍🏫 Grades: Kindergarten to 9th grade

🏆 Prizes: Infini-D Trophy and pizza party

❓ How to compete: run the Infini-D League mission with your class

📝 Rules and leaderboard: check out the official website for more information

Get ready to embark on an exciting adventure with your students as the Infini-D League missions. Stayed tuned for more updates closer to the competition!

2022 Infini-D League Winners

K-3rd grades winners:

🥇 Provo Peaks Elementry (UT)

🥈 Home Elementary (TX)

🥉 Cook Elementary (UT)

Top New School:

⭐ Alpine Elementary (UT)

K-3 winners-Provo Peaks Elementary (UT)

4-9th grade winners

🥇 Edgemont Elementry (UT)

🥈 Cook Elementary (UT)

🥉 Provo Peaks Elementary (UT)

Top New School:

⭐ Duval Charter School at Southside K-8 (FL)

4-9 winners-Edgemont Elementary (UT)

CMSC and Farpoint Voyagers, look for more information here on the Blog and in the Google Classrooms.  

Mr. Williamson

Imaginarium Theater

The Best Videos From Around the World Edited for a Gentler Audience

Sunday, April 16, 2023

It Was Honor's Night at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center. Read Who was Honored and For What and See Pictures of Their Amazed Reactions! Plus The Imaginarium Theater

The Honor's Night crowd.  As you can see, only Dave, Silver, Brylee and Mrs. Houston paid for ringside seats. The rest could only afford the nose bleed section

Honor's Night at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center occurs twice a year. It is a night when the staff and volunteers gather to be honored, praised, motivated, and as per tradition, reminded that a "Clean Ship is a Happy Ship". Why that is brought up year after year (including during my time as director) is a testament to the fact that teens have a tendency to be messy and disorganized when it comes to 'things'.

James Porter is the CMSC Director. He was the evenings MC. He brought the usual 'Porter' comedic, free flowing and casual flare to the proceedings.

And let's not forget that everyone who attended was served a good helping of Mr. Porter's blue ribbon award winning sarcastic casserole topped with whipped dry humor on a paper plate as they entered. By the way, I broke into Mr. Porter's office and found his sarcastic casserole recipe and am including it here.

Porter Family Sarcasm Casserole

  • 1 cup of biting wit
  • 2 tablespoons of irony
  • 3 cloves of garlic (for extra flavor)
  • 1 can of thinly veiled insults
  • A pinch of salt (to really rub it in)
  • A generous helping of dry sense of humor, aged to perfection


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. You'll need a casserole dish for this one, so make sure you have one handy.

  2. Start by mincing your cloves of garlic. This is a great time to practice your passive-aggressive muttering skills, so don't hold back.

  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine your biting wit, irony, and thinly veiled insults. Mix well until everything is evenly distributed.

  4. Add in your minced garlic and a pinch of salt. Again, make sure you're really letting your inner snark shine through as you mix everything together.

  5. Transfer the mixture to your casserole dish, and top with a generous helping of your dry sense of humor, aged to perfection. If you don't have any on hand, feel free to substitute with a healthy dose of eye-rolling.

  6. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the edges are crispy and the sarcasm is bubbling over.

  7. Serve with a side of side-eye and a healthy dose of passive-aggressive commentary. Enjoy! 

After the call to arms regarding cleanliness, Mr. Porter introduced the newly hired members of staff. Micah, Kayla, Lily and Aaron stood in front of their peers and gladly accepted their Royal Blues and a paycheck. Let it be knows that they worked hard to get their Royal Blues and earned their due 20 seconds of polite applause.

New Mentors

The event then continued with the introduction of 2 new Space Center mentors: Kayla, and Michael. They sure looked good in their Royal Blues under the planetarium's spotlights. Their elevation to Mentor status comes with appointments as officers in the Voyager Club. This volunteering club is the backbone of the Space Center's mission to excite young people to excel in math and science and to create a space faring civilization.

Kayla and Michael waiting for the applause to begin 

The Cassini Pin

Jon Parker was brought up to present Amberley and Alex with their Cassini Pin. He succeeded in pinning the pins onto their lanyards without drawing blood. You see, Jon's pinning hand is the same hand he uses to hold the Cassini's microphone when he flies missions. That hand shakes from time to time making it difficult to perform fine motion skills - like pinning sharp pins onto lanyards. Jon didn't want anyone to know this, but he has been recently diagnosed with "Flight Director Hands" A crippling condition brought on by years of clutching a microphone. He is undergoing treatment and should recover with physical therapy and counseling.

                                      Jon Parker with Cassini Honorees

The Phoenix Pin

The Phoenix Honorees for the night were Kayla and Emil. Silver is the Phoenix Set Director and made the pin presentation with dignity considering his near crippling shyness. I've been working with him on eye contact to prepare him for the event. We almost had it locked down, but as you can see, Silver lost confidence at the last second and broke eye contact. It's OK. We're making progress. It took a few months, but we finally have him giving mission briefings facing his crew instead of away.

                                        Silver with Phoenix Honorees

The Odyssey Pin

Mitch directs the Odyssey. It was his pleasure to award Michael the Odyssey Pin.

Mitch works at Adobe for his day job and moonlights at the Space Center directing the Odyssey. He is the latest in a series of outstanding Odyssey Set Directors. His goal is to remove all doubt from anyone that the Odyssey is the best ship of the fleet. He does that by bringing very confident people onto his staff. You won't find a dissenting vote from anyone regarding Michael's self confidence. Michael oozes self confidence and rightfully so, Scott is his big brother. In fact, Michael is so self confident in his skills and talents that a poem was written in his honor just for this occasion.

Michael stood tall and proud, Confidence bursting through his shroud. He knew he was destined for great things, And his self-belief grew wings.

He soared to new heights, Achieving his dreams in sight. Becoming an officer on the Odyssey, His confidence shining brightly.

With his head held high, And his heart full of pride, Michael knew he was meant to be, A starship officer in the galaxy.

While never to be classified as great literature, the poem gets the message across and can then be quickly forgotten.

The Galileo Pin

Alex was recognized for his outstanding work in the Galileo by being pined by the great Brylee herself. The Galileo is the little ship that can - despite its size. It can tell great stories; think of its summer camp survey results. It can attract superb talent - just look at Brylee and Orion. It can attract top Voyager Cadets as volunteers - just look at Alex. It can also stand its ground when the occasional careless comment about its size passes across its communication's antenna. So let's remember one thing about the Galileo.

In a universe vast and unknown,

the little Galileo holds its own.

When in doubt of this fact, just think back to the what happened to the mighty Spanish Armada when the English ships appeared.

The Journeyman: 5 Years of Service

The Journeyman Honorees were recognized for their service to the Space Center. These were the individuals who had put in 5 years of service to the space center as both volunteers and staff. They were praised for their dedication and commitment to the Space Center.

I've had the pleasure of working with all four of the new Journeyman. They are top notch, talented individuals who understand the Space Center's mission and their role in making it a reality.

Some of you old timers may recognize Jade. Look closely at the black and white picture from his yearbook (printed when color photographs hadn't been invented). Jade was one of our top volunteers from the 1990's who, like Mitch, has a good day job and moonlights at the Space Center because he believes in its mission. Jade's two teen age children are also on staff and proudly wear their Royal Blues - following in their dad's footsteps.

The Apprentice Starfighters: 100 Hours of Volunteer Service

The Hitchhikers: 500 Hours of Volunteer Service

The Defenders: 1000 Hours of Volunteer Service

Look at this Who's Who of great American students gathered in the planetarium to be honored for their numerous hours of volunteer work at the Space Center. There is a rumor circulating throughout Utah Valley that a complaint against the Space Center has been filed with the Utah Valley Better Business Bureau. The complaint alleges that the Space Center steals the best young volunteers in the valley leaving very little for other non-profit organizations. All I can say is, True...... very True.

The Houston Pillowcase, Only Sold in the Finest Stores and Given Exclusively to Honor Great Space Center Employees

Brylee and Marissa with their Houston Originals

Brylee and Marissa were award the famous Mrs. Houston Space Pillowcases at Honors Night for their outstanding work and dedication to the Space Center. The Houston Pillowcase is the ultimate luxurious addition to your bedding collection. These pillowcases are the finest on the market, crafted from high-quality materials and designed with the utmost attention to detail.

Jon Parker with the Famous Mrs. Lorraine Houston at Honor's Night. Jon has a Houston Space Pillowcase. Do You?

The Houston Space Pillowcases are given exclusively to the top staff at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center, a testament to their exceptional quality and craftsmanship.

Would you like to have a Houston Space Pillowcase? Just be as awesome as Brylee and Marissa and you may well find yourself being called forward during an Honors Night to get one of your own.

The Founders Award Given to Jon Parker

Jon Parker, a true hero and a mentor to many, was awarded the Founder's Recognition during Honor's Night. Jon's unwavering dedication and commitment to the Christa McAuliffe Space Center for 18 years is a testament to his love for science, education, and exploration.

Jon Parker has been a role model to hundreds of staff and volunteers, imparting his knowledge, wisdom, and passion to all those who had the privilege of working with him. His listening ear and compassionate nature have made him an exceptional leader and an inspiration to all.

His devotion to the space center's mission to teach using the discipline of wonder has been extraordinary. His imaginative mind, akin to that of Disney, and his remarkable storytelling abilities, comparable to Homer's, have captured the hearts and minds of countless visitors to the center.

Jon Parker's contributions to the Christa McAuliffe Space Center have been immeasurable. His unwavering dedication, selflessness, and commitment have set the standard for excellence in our method of experiential education, inspiring generations of young people to explore the wonders of the universe.

Jon's legacy will continue to inspire and motivate future generations of scientists, educators, and explorers.

It's time to wrap up this blogpost. Honor's Night at the Christa McAuliffe Space Center was a night filled with excitement and celebration as the entire team celebrated the achievements of their colleagues. The event was a reminder of the Space Center's mission to excite young people to excel in math and science and to create a space faring civilization, and it was a testament to the hard work and dedication of the entire team.

Imaginarium Theater

The Best Videos From Around the World Edited for a Gentler Audience