Alabama’s space museum is both marking the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 16 lunar mission and looking ahead to the next U.S. spaceflight to the moon, as was reported by the AP.
A member of the Apollo 16 crew, former astronaut Charlie Duke, will be on hand in Huntsville on Wednesday as the U.S. Space and Rocket Center looks back on the April 1972 mission. The Apollo 16 capsule, nicknamed “Casper,” is housed at the museum, which cleaned up the spaceship earlier this year ahead of the celebration.
Duke and NASA officials are among those who will participate in an event that also will focus on the space agency’s upcoming test of its new, 30-story Space Launch System rocket. NASA is targeting June for a test flight to send the rocket to the moon without a crew.
The administrator of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Jody Singer, and James Free, NASA’s associate administrator for exploration development, will discuss the space agency’s work to return to the moon.
After the first launch in NASA’s Artemis program, NASA plans to send astronauts around the moon in 2024. A lunar landing attempt is planned for as early as 2025.
People last walked on the moon during the Apollo 17 mission in December 1972.
In other travel related news, the AP also reported that artwork damaged when a violent storm tore the roof from a Georgia museum five years ago is going back on display for a summer exhibit.
Staff at the Albany Museum of Art scrambled to save its collection in January 2017 as rain poured into the building for hours. More than 2,000 pieces were sent to Chicago to be treated for damage, WALB-TV reported, while others went into storage in Atlanta.
“It was definitely shocking to see the museum in such a state, but we didn’t have time to sit with our mouths open,” said Katie Dillard, the museum’s director of curatorial affairs. “We had to jump into action.”
Dillard helped pack up the artwork in the storm’s aftermath, and now she’s unpacking it as the pieces return home. Restoration took several years, she said, as experts in Chicago performed tedious work such as extracting water from wooden pieces. The coronavirus pandemic further slowed the job.
An exhibit of the restored art will open in May and run until August.
“We’re just proud to have it all back and we’re excited to share it with the community again,” Dillard said.
Also in travel related news, the AP reported that The National Corvette Museum in Kentucky says it’s adding an education gallery that will feature artifacts and interactive technology to share the brand’s story.
Construction of the 2,000-square-foot gallery is set to begin in late May, museum officials said. The gallery is scheduled to open late this year or in early 2023 at the Bowling Green-based museum.
“This new gallery will educate, engage and entertain our guests,” said Sharon Brawner, the museum’s president and CEO.