Right now, Hurricane Matthew is making landfall on Florida. It is predicted to be the only full strength hurricane to hit the US since 2005 and possibly the worst to hit the Space Coast ever. A state of emergency for Florida and South Carolina has already been declared.
Since starting Chasing Atlantis, we’ve made nearly a dozen trips down to the Space Coast and have gotten to know wonderful people who live and work in the area. They are battened down tonight waiting for the full wrath of the storm. We want them all to know that our thoughts are with them as Matthew makes landfall.
Fore more info, there is a great Q and A on Hurricane Matthew with veteran reporter, John Schwartz who covered Katrina.
Sitting in the Vancouver airport right now. Doing a multi-leg journey back to Toronto then heading south through Washington and finally Orlando. Meeting back up with Paul in Orlando where we will be making our way back to NASA. Very stoked to get into the Vehicle Assembly Building to see an orbiter up close.
We will keep you updated along the way and definitely have some shots posted!
Got a call back from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) today!! They apologized for the delay in getting back to us. (I can imagine how busy they are.)
Canadian Astronauts Bob Thirsk, Julie Payette, and Chris Hadfield, will all be present in Florida during the launch. Being an independent film, we are not able to secure press passes to get into the Kennedy Space Center, where the Space Agency wanted to host the interviews. When I explained our predicament regarding media accreditation, the CSA suggested that we do the interview off-site!
They are working out the details now. I will keep everybody posted. In the meantime, our sincere appreciate to the Media Relations team at the Canadian Space Agency for their efforts to help us with this project!
Received a call today from Jim Kennedy. Jim is a former director of the Kennedy Space Center and has said that he’d be willing to sit down with us and talk space, Atlantis and NASA. His bio can be found at http://weneedourspace.com/WeNeedOurSpace/Bio.html. We are still hoping to hear back from a few other interview requests that we’ve put in. More to come.
Chasing Atlantis is now up to a team of 5 meaning that we are running two vehicles down instead of just the single car. We are an official convoy now! Really excited that Melanie has joined the team. An accomplished photographer, Mel will certainly bring a new lens (literally) to our project. You can check out her site at www.melaniegodecki.com/
X Ray scans for metal fatigue have checked out on Atlantis. It would appear that all is still go for the targeted July 8th Launch. The only thing we can do now is pray for good weather. Long term forecasts for that Friday will still be shaky at best. We’ll have to wait until we get closer to launch date. We depart for the US on July 4th.
Still have irons in the fire in terms of interviews. Haven’t heard back yet from the Canadian Space Agency nor Marc Garneau’s constituency office. However, today was a holiday in Quebec meaning that anything coming down the pipe on both those fronts would be delayed. Also sent e-mails out to InnerSPACE on the Space Channel as well as the Toronto Star to see if they would be interested in talking with us either before or after our trip (or both) to see Atlantis.
If you have any other recommendations for people of interest you’d think would be awesome to talk to for the doc, please send us a note!
In the meantime, keep checking back and hit up the Twitter feed for more updates!
Finalized the remaining logistical details with the team yesterday. Titusville is totally booked up in terms of accommodation as we expected it to be. We were trying to ride a fine line between waiting long enough to ensure that the date of the launch would remain fixed (besides weather delays) and waiting too late and not ensuring we have somewhere to stay. We’ve managed to secure a location in Palm Bay, about 50 minutes south of Titusville. While not directly in the city nor in Orlando, we are situated right on the I95 which should provide direct access to the Space View Park and prevent having to navigate traffic through Orlando assuming there will be a high volume of tourists than usual. I called the city of Titusville to see if we could throw up a tent overnight at the Space Park. They said no. I wonder how many tents will be there anyway. 😉
With every single hotel in Titusville booked, the city will be hosting an enormous contingent of people stoked to see the launch. We’re looking forward to joining with the community of launch-goers!
Still waiting to hear back from the Canadian Space Agency to see if we can’t hammer down a time to talk with the 3 or so Canadian Astronauts who will be at the Kennedy Space Center. Would be a huge disappointment to have heard from them the first time in terms of an invitation only not to receive a reply for confirmation. I’m keeping my hopes up.
Just realized as I’m writing this that I still need to book my flight out of Florida back to Toronto. Been putting so much thought into getting to Florida, I keep forgetting about getting back FROM Florida. The rest of the team will probably be staying south of the border for a few days in the beautiful State. I can’t make the drive back. I’m in a wedding party 30 hours after the wedding back in Canada!
STS 135 Astronauts are now doing countdown rehearsals at the Kennedy Space Center. Thus far, inspections on the shuttle are not showing any need for launch delay based on technical failure, structural damage etc. (check out the RSS feed below)
As the astronauts train, we are continuing our planning for the trip. It will be a busy few days and we need to ensure that we can fit everything in that we wanted to do specifically between the Smithsonian, the Space Walk of Fame and the Kennedy Space Center as well as some potential interviews.
Our first full team meeting is tonight. I’m excited to finalize the details of the trip. I also hear that there will be nachos!
Just heard back from the media and public relations people at the Canadian Space Agency. They have a number of Canadian Astronauts they said they are willing to try and connect with us who will be at the KSC. So excited!! Just trying to work out the logistics now.
We are just waiting to hear back from a few other requests that we’ve sent out. I have one outstanding with the Smithsonian, which includes a film permission request we sent out, a contact at the Space Walk of Fame in Titusville, and specifically to Mark Garneau, former Canadian Astronaut and current Member of Parliament in the Canadian Federal Liberal Party.
We have started vlogging for the site as well. Two first entries are finished with more to come as we prep for STS 135 as well as posts while we are en route! The first two will up today.