It seemed like it was forever away and now it's here!!
I just wish Rick was flying down with me. :( It's going to suck to be all by myself that first night.
I think I have everything I need packed. I've got a carryon packed w/my big lens, my camera body & a couple all purpose lenses, clothes for the next day, just in case, and my tripod head. All my other not as important camera stuff is tucked in with my clothes in the bag that's going to be checked.
I've never traveled with so much camera & electronic equipment. I hope it doesn't slow down security too much.
I've also gotten my hair cut & colored so I hopefully won't look too insane if I end up on tv.
I know for sure I'm going to be on NASA's UStream channel. From our itinerary:
NASA will use UStream to broadcast the 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m. portion of the May 13 NASA Tweetup at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nasa-television. Portions of the NASA Tweetup may be broadcast on NASA Television and online at http://www.nasa.gov/ntv.
Speaking of itinerary, we got our schedule for the Tweetup:
Thursday, May 13/L-1: Day 1
8-9 a.m. -- Registration at the Kennedy Space Center Press Accreditation Badging Building
9-10 a.m. -- Travel to the press site, set up, meet fellow participants
10 a.m. -- Welcome and introductions by @NASA team members John Yembrick and Stephanie Schierholz
10:10 a.m. -- Robert D. Braun, NASA chief technologist, NASA Headquarters
10:30 a.m. Jon Cowart (@Rocky_Sci), Orbiter Engineering manager, Space Shuttle Program, Kennedy Space Center
10:50 a.m. -- Stephanie Stilson, space shuttle Discovery processing director, Shuttle Processing Office, Kennedy Space Center
11:10 a.m. -- Astronaut Janice Voss
11:30 p.m.-12:15 p.m. -- Break for lunch
12:30 p.m.-1:15 p.m. -- Demonstration of the Advanced Crew Escape Suit (ACES)
1:20 p.m. -- Instructions for launch day, board buses
1:30-6:30 p.m. -- Tour of NASA's Kennedy Space Center, including visits to the International Space Station Center and Apollo Saturn V Center. Your tour will drive by the Orbiter Processing Facility, Vehicle Assembly Building, Mobile Launcher Platforms and Crawler-Transporter. The last stop on the tour will be Launch Pad 39A to view retraction of the Rotating Service Structure, scheduled for 5:20 p.m. and space shuttle Atlantis. We will have a short break at the press site at about 4:30 p.m. If you need to leave, you may do so at that time. For the tour, you must wear long pants and closed, low-heeled shoes. Tank tops are not permitted.
Friday, May 14/Launch: Day 2
9:30 a.m. -- Arrive at Kennedy Space Center Launch Complex 39 Press Site.
10 a.m. -- Group picture beside the countdown clock.
10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. -- Free time and visits from guest speakers, including
- Astronaut Dave Wolf
- Lt. Col. Patrick Barrett, weather officer with the Air Force's 45th Space Wing Weather Squadron
- Chris Meinert, STS-132 Closeout Crew member
- Madi Sengupta (@msengupta), Space Station Robotics instructor at NASA's Johnson Space Center
- Amiko Kauderer, @NASA_Johnson team member leading STS-132 mission Tweetup
2:20 p.m. -- Launch of space shuttle Atlantis on the STS-132 mission
~3:30 p.m. -- Post-launch news conference on NASA TV
Following the launch, you are free to depart on your own schedule. If you leave immediately, be prepared to sit in traffic for quite some time.
We get to watch them retract the Rotating Service Structure! Cool! Hopefully we'll be close enough that we can get some good pictures of her on the launch pad in her naked glory afterwards! (If you're not sure what retracting the Rotating Service Structure is, there's a good series of pictures that shows it HERE)