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

Sunday, January 1, 2023

Desolate Eden, A New Project from Celestial Horizons: See What Your Old Space Center Veteran Friends are Up To. It's Amazing. Get Involved. Imaginarium Theater

Happy New Year to everyone in the Space EdVenturing community! Have you ever wondered what some of the Space Center veterans  are doing these days?  Sure, they retired from Starfleet years ago but they're hardly past their "sell by" dates.  Many are living useful, productive lives planetside.  Some have found a way to keep their feet in the science fiction / space drama / simulation pool by joining Nathan Young's Desolate Eden Space Extravaganza! And what a production it is.  I listened to the first part and am impressed, nay amazed, nay floored by the quality and professionalism.  Well done to everyone involved.  

This is something which deserves your support.  Please read the following update written by Nathan Young - and when finished, join the Discord, listen to the tracks (the link is below) and if possible, donate some of that Christmas money you found in your stockings. 

To sum up, I'm calling the space center diaspora to find a way to support our friends in this endeavor.  


And Now, Nathan's Update...


Hey Vic,

We are SUPER excited to share Desolate Eden, our MASSIVE audio drama. We just put up the YouTube versions this week, though the Spotify, Audible, and Apple Podcasts versions have been up for a month or so now. I thought it’d be fun to share a few behind-the-scenes photos from the production process with your readers! (Not to mention brag about the cool Space Center people we roped into it!)

What is Desolate Eden? First, you can find links to your favorite platforms at   And the good, old-fashioned YouTube release playlist can be found here:

Desolate Eden is a history podcast from the future, where a trio of historians reconstruct the “truth” behind events that took place hundreds of years before they were born. Note, however, that these narrators may not be entirely reliable. Some of their sources are heavily redacted, and others are – by their own admission – entirely fabricated.

The narrative is brought to life by a large cast of voice actors, an original score, and unique sound design. The YouTube release has visuals that give new context for the events of the story.

To help make it easier to listen to, we broke it into 3 parts – each of them a continuation from the last.

THE STORY (Don’t worry, no spoilers here.)

During a golden age now long past, humanity spread itself amongst the stars. But while enthusiastic colonists were on their way to their new homes, mission control cut all communications with them.

Now, centuries later, their descendants are given the opportunity to return to Earth, to make contact with their lost cousins, and attempt to discover why they had been abandoned.

Desolate Eden is designed to stand alone, so although it ties in with other podcasts we’ve put out, you don’t need to know anything to be able to jump right in. We think of those other podcasts more as test runs as we were preparing to tell this story. That means that if you find you really like Desolate Eden, you can go back and get a more in-depth look at the events that led up to it!

Rachel Harken was one of the people who gave me feedback on the script, providing helpful comments like “ooooh Alice is SPICY,” “you should just throw all of this ((REDACTED)) out, cause it sucks” and “this scene was good, but it could be, like, 100x spookier. Get on it.” Legitimately helpful comments, all the way around! You have her to blame for that sequence.

Rachel from her Space Center days

In the words of the great Connor Larsen when flying “Escape” in the old Magellan, “Holy Cow, ya’ll.” We sent out a casting call on twitter... and were FLOODED with submissions from all over the world. In the course of 1 week, we had NEARLY 1200 submissions. This is a screenshot of HALF of the readings we had for ONE character...

This is what the actors would record and send to us – it's called a “side.” I designed it to serve as a litmus test – if the actor could nail (or surprise me!) with one specific line, I’d listen to the rest of their audition. They’ve got 3-5 seconds, (in some cases, two words!) to convince me they get it and can do it, and then I will actually listen to their take. I could teach a whole class on how to handle callbacks, but for brevity’s sake, I’ll say it left me looking like this:

It’s heartbreaking, having so many talented people to choose from, and having to make cuts based just on how you want all the parts to fit together. Casting is INCREDIBLY difficult for large pieces like this.

Our final cast has people from all over the English-speaking world, from New York to Canada to the UK to Australia. But a lot of them came from Utah! (Though many of them resisted sending me pictures...) Space Center people may recognize some of the names on there, including...

Natalie Brianne, the pen name for Natalie Anderson, former Odyssey set director, as Tasella Lamoreaux, first officer of the main ship we spend our time on in the show, who appears at the end of part 1.

Chris Call as Odyssey Set Director

Chris Call, the real name for Chris Call, former Odyssey set director, as Hession Poctoli, captain of one of the other ships in the fleet, who appears in Part 2.

Nathan Young and Natalie Anderson in the Odyssey

Nathan Young, the True Name for Nathan Young, former Odyssey set director, as Vasan Vandariel, appearing at the end of part 1.

Christine Appointing Emily as her Replacement Odyssey Set Director

Christine Smith, the married name of Christine Grosland, former Odyssey set director, as Zilnara, one of the other ship captains, appears in Part 2 (See a pattern here? No, I didn’t realize this trend until I was writing this up... but I will say, if there are any other Odyssey set directors who want to audition for anything of mine in the future, I’d say your odds seem to be in your favor...)

                                   Jon Parker Having an Idea on the Old Magellan

Jon Parker (who needs to introduction other than to note that he has never been Odyssey set director,) played one of the crew members in part 1.

Lindsey Hatch was a reporter in part 1.

Stacy Harken and James Smith were both additional voices in part 1.

Now that it’s all cast, I needed to give them notes, as everyone would have to record at home. Here are some samples of the things I would write:

I made a binder full of all of the themes. When it came time to score the whole thing, I’d listen to the dialogue, and play along with the scene. The goal was to create more of a “live” feeling to the performance, rather than something perfectly synthesized and static. I’d flip back and forth through the sheet music, improvising variations on each theme, and then would go back through and add new instruments, fix mistakes, and “put some meat on those musical bones.”

What’s next for us? Great question! Right now, I’m doing a lot of reading, research, and outlining. I’ve got a few smaller things (zoomed-in looks at different parts of the universe, like the Alice Corp., the situation back in Hypatia, and the head of the Cyprian state,) that I’ll be producing in the next few months. The proper sequel, however, is still very up-in-the-air.

It took me about 1350 hours to make this over the course of 8 months, on top of my day job. I probably won’t survive doing that again... (at least, not in any timely manner.) And while we produced this for easily 25x less than what it would cost a full production company to do, it still cost us a couple grand in tools, paying actors, etc., so we’re also kinda waiting until we can raise some more money. As fun as paying out-of-pocket for everything is, I’m running out of meals I can skip to make ends meet!

So if you enjoy it, be sure to like, share, subscribe, send it to your nerd friends, leave a review, etc. Also, if you have any rich eccentric relatives who are looking for somewhere to throw a lot of money, maybe send it to them too. We’ve submitted it to some competitions and award shows in hopes of increasing its visibility, so we’ll be sure to share any good news that comes on that front. The further we can spread it, the better the odds that we can do this again!

And if anybody wants to learn more about the production process, the project as a whole, or just say hi, feel free to join our discord server (link on the website) or shoot me an email at!


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Sunday, December 25, 2022

Merry Christmas to the Space EdVenturers Worldwide! The Imaginarium Theater!

Merry Christmas!

Speaking as the founder of our form of simulator based experiential education, I want to wish the staff and volunteers of the Christa McAuliffe Space Center, The Space Place at Renaissance Academy, American Heritage Space Center, Telos Discovery Space Center, and The Lions Gate Space Center at Lakeview Academy along with our Voyagers, Young Astronauts, loyal Troubadours, and our good friends at InfiniD a very merry Christmas! And let's not forget to send our Season's Greetings to our great friends at Dream Flight Adventures. I know the many simulators are enjoying a well-needed rest. Each one parked, snoozing, and waiting to be woken by a flight director at the beginning of the `Long Stretch' to Spring Vacation.

The Long Dreaded Stretch That Lies Ahead

This 'Long, Dreaded, Stretch', is the time of the school year only understood by the educational community and students. This desert of time runs from January to April. Its landscape is marked by a few, one-day holidays and nothing else. Teachers survive the 'Long Stretch' by rationing their sanity and patience into weekly packages.

Each Monday one parcel of sanity is opened and inserted into the appropriate mental slot. By Wednesday, students begin sensing the supply is waning. This is usually demonstrated by the teacher's quivering lip and a seemingly innocent twitch over the left eye - a warning sign that something dark and sinister is bubbling in a dark place.

Thursday is the bleakest day. It marks the end of the teacher's working supply of patience. This is the day teachers earn their notorious reputation by verbally striking out at children with swords of satiric comment and bullets of snide and degrading remarks describing their student's mental abilities. Thursday finds teachers sticking pins into the pictures of their 'deserving' students on 'The Bulletin Board' kept hidden from public view in most faculty rooms. At the beginning of each school year the Board is cursed by a practitioner of the Voodoo arts. The ritual begins with hours of chanting accompanied by shaking rattles. This is followed by the sacrificing of a chicken (recently modified by replacing a real chicken with a 9 piece McNuggets from McDonalds to satisfy the animal rights advocates in the educational community. Although not as effective, it is less messy). The Board is ready for use once it is properly prepared.

On Thursdays one is reminded of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem as you watch teachers gaze at the hundreds of pictures on the Board. The chanting, the rocking, the occasional weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth are all there. Many of you have wondered why you suddenly take sick at school. Now you understand. I could tell you more but I'm taking a calculated risk writing what I've written.

Friday's wisps of sanity are fueled by fumes only. The Fumes of Patience have a calming effect on teachers when combined with warm thoughts of a weekend. I know the long stretch from January to May is hard on students also. Best thing to do is keep a positive attitude and work hard. When you are working hard the time goes faster.

Seriously, I want to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas. It has been a pleasure working with the finest young adults in Utah Valley over the years. I'm honored that you consider the space centers worthy of your valuable time. Enjoy this holiday season with family and friends and be all the more ready to return to the trenches. There are thousands of children waiting anxiously for their upcoming missions and you make it happen!

Yes, Merrily Go!
Mr. Williamson

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Sunday, December 18, 2022

Enjoy this trip through the Old Space Center Recorded as a SciFi Staff / Volunteer Production. High School Party on the Voyager, April 2005. Imaginarium Theater.

Time to enjoy the Christmas Break!

I found this little gem on YouTube.  It is a short sci-fi adventure produced and directed by Warren Nuila.  Warren was one of our top volunteers around 15 years ago. He rose through the ranks to earn his Blue Shirt and a pay check.  

Warren got a few of his friends together to make this short film. It was shot in the original Galileo simulator (1998 - 2009), and the USS Voyager.  Of course you'll see parts of Central Elementary School as well.  Take 9 minutes of your precious holiday time and watch. See if you can recognize where every scene was filmed.  Take a moment to appreciate how the Galileo changed over the years from number 1 to the present ship at the new Christa McAuliffe Space Center.   

A High School Birthday Party on the USS Voyager.  April 2005.  

The starship simulators have always been a fun place for private parties.  Today we will take a trip in The Troubadour's Way Back Machine to join a group of Pleasant Grove High School students celebrating a birthday. The date, April 16, 2005.  The USS Voyager was the ship. The mission, I'm not sure. I know I flew the mission because it was for my nephew. Let's rely on people with great memories (like Jon Parker) to identify the mission (Update: Jon Parker sent a text after this was posted to tell me the mission we flew was Perikoi. Thanks Jon).  The tactical screens on the Voyager's screen are too blurry for easy identification.   

The group picture at the mission's end

Red Alert!  The Science / Records Station was on the top platform, Beneath Records were the Left Wing and Damage Control Stations.

We're looking down to the lower bridge Communications Station from the Captain's Platform. 

Brock Bodily is the small volunteer helping his big brother (Chaz) with something

Chaz and friend just outside the Voyager's Brig.

The Voyager's Captain at a critical point in the story. Look at that determination in his eyes.

The Voyager's Communication Station. 

Brayden Bodily (black shirt) volunteered on the mission

Chaz protecting the bridge from the alien bad guys.

The volunteers in costume at the end of the mission
Left to Right:  Bracken Funk, ? his face is covered, Brock Bodily, Taylor Herring

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