LOS ANGELES, Oct. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Space Shuttle Endeavour title transfer was finalized this morning with former NASA astronaut and STS-134 Commander Mark Kelly, the STS-134 crew, NASA Associate Deputy Administrator Richard Keegan and California Science Center President Jeffrey N. Rudolph. Also present to witness the title transfer to the California Science Center Foundation were California State Consumer Services Agency Secretary Anna Caballero, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts, Senator Curren Price, Assemblyman Steve Bradford, Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas, and Senior Advisor to the California Science Center Foundation for EndeavourLA Steve Soboroff. The event included more than 400 business, community and philanthropic leaders as well as Science Center members and Science Center School students.
A highlight of the event was the display of four flown tires – from Atlantis, Discovery and Columbia. Commander Mark Kelly and the astronauts - Michael Fincke, Gregory Johnson and Andrew Feustel – gave a slide presentation on their experiences with the Endeavour, as the STS-134 crew which flew Endeavour's final space mission.
"NASA is pleased to share this wonderful orbiter with the California Science Center to help inspire a new generation of explorers," said NASA Administrator Charles F. Bolden. "The next chapter in space exploration begins now, and we're standing on the shoulders of the men and women of the shuttle program to reach farther into the solar system."
California Science Center President Jeffrey Rudolph said, "Today marks the beginning of Endeavour's new mission to stimulate interest in science and engineering in future generations."
Rudolph also announced the launch of EndeavourLA, a comprehensive fundraising campaign to raise $200 million, which will help bring Endeavour to Los Angeles, create a new Air and Space Center, and support ongoing programs and operations. Members of the public can donate by visiting www.BringEndeavourHome.org. In addition to making a general donation to support EndeavourLA, the public can sponsor a thermal protection system tile and be associated with Endeavour in perpetuity. Sponsorship levels begin at $1,000.
Mayor Villaraigosa added, "Having Endeavour at the California Science Center will serve to motivate and inspire millions of young people to dream about possibilities and will attract people from around the world to our great city. The Endeavour, as a historical treasure, will be a brilliant centerpiece for Los Angeles and will assist in our city's economic revitalization."
On April 12, 2011, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden announced that the Science Center was one of four institutions in the nation to receive a Space Shuttle. The Science Center was awarded the Endeavour, a flown shuttle. Endeavour is currently at the Kennedy Space Center undergoing removal of hazardous items and preparations for its eventual public display. NASA's work should be complete in the latter half of 2012, after which Endeavour will arrive at LAX by ferry-flight aboard a 747 NASA Shuttle Carrier Aircraft. From there it will travel through the streets of Los Angeles to its destination at the California Science Center in Exposition Park. It will be temporarily displayed in temporary structure before moving to its permanent building facility in five years.
About the California Science Center
The California Science Center is a dynamic destination where families, adults and children can explore the wonders of science through interactive exhibits, live demonstrations, innovative programs and awe-inspiring films. Its mission is as follows: " We aspire to stimulate curiosity and inspire science learning in everyone by creating fun, memorable experiences, because we value science as an indispensable tool for understanding our world, accessibility and inclusiveness, and enriching people's lives."
General Info: The California Science Center and IMAX Theater are located in historic Exposition Park just west of the Harbor (110) Freeway at 700 Exposition Park Drive, Los Angeles. Open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., except on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. For recorded information, including IMAX show times, call 323.SCIENCE (323.724-3623). IMAX ticket prices range from $5.00 to $8.25. For advance ticket purchases, group rates, or to make reservations for any visiting group of 15 or more (required), call 213.744-2019. Parking is available in the guest lot at Figueroa and 39th / Exposition Park Drive at $10 per car, and $25 for commercial buses or oversize vehicles. Both the Science Center and IMAX Theater is wheelchair accessible. For further information, please visit our website at www.californiasciencecenter.org.
SOURCE California Science Center