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Old 24 Aug 21, 09:33 AM  
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The First Trip 1993 – Day Ten – Kennedy Space Centre – 19th September 1993

Today we had a really cool trip to the Kennedy Space Centre, something that I was really looking forward to as the space shuttle programme was in full flow and we had found out that one was going up in the next few days, although I think we forgot which day it was and didn’t see ti in the end. We did see a couple go up in subsequent trips. We set off fairly early and again using maps from hotels and petrol stations, we managed to navigate our way to Cape Canaveral.

It was a fairly basic site at that time with the rocket garden, the bus tour, the launch centre and the Saturn V rocket being the only attractions. It was probably more like a working museum than a visitor attraction at that time. We called in at a diner on the way for food (not sure which one) and fueled up for the journey out to the coast. I remember it being a really great drive over the causeways and bridges out to Kennedy and then into the car park mid morning.



We paid for our tickets there and booked onto the coach tour for just after lunch. We had a look around the rocket garden and a couple of other exhibits and then sat down for a drink before boarding the bus for the tour of the site. We passed the main huge hanger with the flag and then they took us out right up to the launch pad. The coach actually circled the launch pad and as you can see in the photo, the shuttle is on the pad ready to go and probably all fuelled up! I asked my wife about this and she thinks we actually got off the coach to take photos at the launch pad, but I haven’t any that close and I can’t remember doing that, but maybe we did?

At that time, I guess there were less controls around health and safety and you can see how close we were in the photo below vs how close we could get in 2008 when we took the kids for the first time, where again there was a shuttle on the launch pad.





The coach then dropped us back off at the Launch Centre and at that time the Saturn V Rocket lived outside and if you remember had been in The Police video for the single Walking on the Moon, who were one of my favourite bands growing up, so a double bonus. It really was fantastic to be this close to the rocket and to see its size in real life. It was unbelievable to think that people sat in a tiny capsule at the top of this thing and were blasted into space. We watched the launch sequence in the control room, had a look at the various exhibits and got the coach back to the main site.


We headed back to Kissimmee and the 192, but alas I can’t remember where we ate or what we did that evening, but I am sure it was great.
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Old 24 Aug 21, 11:15 AM  
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Your wife is sort of correct there, you did get off the coach to take photos but it wasnt near the launchpad it was to an area with a good view of it as far as I can remember, there was a fire escape type tower that you go up to take the photos, again it's a bit hazy the memory but you definitely got off the bus.
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Old 26 Aug 21, 12:41 PM  
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Originally Posted by mickeyspal View Post
Your wife is sort of correct there, you did get off the coach to take photos but it wasnt near the launchpad it was to an area with a good view of it as far as I can remember, there was a fire escape type tower that you go up to take the photos, again it's a bit hazy the memory but you definitely got off the bus.
I remember the viewing tower being there on our 1st trip but last time we went I think they had added some exhibits to look at also.

I also remember our 1st drive to KSC without Sat Navs we got there ok but coming back into Orlando we missed a turning and ended up driving about 40 miles down to the next junction and back up. A gut at one of the Picnic Stops told us to go over the median but to floor it so we wouldnt get stuck! I drove to the next junction..
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