Houston finally got a shuttle. Yeah, it’s not one that flew in space, but you can actually get up inside and look in this one. The museums across the country that received flown orbiters will put them on display behind velvet ropes. Ours is way cooler.
The best part about getting this shuttle here is that my company was able to do all of the event planning and media relations for the event. It was very stressful with ridiculous deadlines, but in the end it was worth every gray hair and breakdown I had at my desk in the days prior.
We were concerned that the community would consider this our ‘consolation prize.’ Houston’s Johnson Space Center was responsible for the program management, training and operations of the shuttle program since it’s inception. However, when the time came to decommission the fleet, politics bypassed us and sent the orbiters to national museums in locations with nothing to do with space (except for Kennedy Space Center). To my surprise, the opposite was true.
The Houston community came out in droves to welcome the shuttle home. The media interest was stellar and I even got our press conference live on the three major networks on Friday. All of the interviews I saw were very positive. The shuttle is a sight to behold, flown or not. If you’ve never been up close to one it can be a humbling experience. These are things of legend.