Rocket test launch ahead of Apollo 11 celebration

The Space and Rocket Center tested model rockets before trying to break the world record on the Apollo 11 anniversary.

Posted: Mar 1, 2019 7:25 PM
Updated: Mar 13, 2019 11:39 AM

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, the Space and Rocket Center is trying to make some history of its own.

They'll try to set a world record by launching 5,000 model rockets at once!

Right now, we are four months away from the attempt at the world record, but organizers are taking every possible step to make sure they get their mission accomplished this July.

"We want to underscore why we are the rocket city and that's a pretty great way to do it," VP of External Affairs for the Space and Rocket Center Joe Vallely said.

The world record attempt will take place on July 16 at 8:32 am, the exact time Apollo 11's rocket engines ignited in 1969. The tourist attraction has other events planned throughout the year to honor the historic moon landing.

"Hopefully, folks will asks us why are we doing this and we can tell our story about honoring the past and inspiring the future," Vallely said.

From test launches to opening a new state-of-the-art planetarium and repainting the iconic 400 foot Saturn rocket next to Interstate 565, the Rocket Center is rolling out the welcome mat for the thousands of visitors expected to come.

The Apollo 11 anniversary is one reason Huntsville was selected by the New York Times as one of the top cities in the world to visit this year!

Sebastian Modak is the traveler for the New York Times and came to Huntsville for Friday's test launch. He says there's more here than just rockets.

"Start with rockets and then expand from there," Modak said. "There's so much more to any city, and it's fun exploring that. It feels like a city that's growing and moving fast."

The Rocket Center says it's already seen an increase in visitors this year and could welcome a million by the year's end.

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