Space Shuttle Atlantis Display - Kennedy Space Center & Delaware North Get It Right

  • Sep 2, 2013 4:29pm GMT

In late June, ATA staff were able to attend a preview of the new Space Shuttle Atlantis display at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

The Space Shuttle Atlantis exhibit is part of a $100 million addition to the existing and already impressive visitor center just outside of the Kennedy Space Center. The visitor complex is managed and operated by Delaware North, a hospitality management company that operates venues in perse locations including Yellowstone, Yosemite and Grand Canyon National Parks.

Visitors are greeted at the new building, designed specifically to house Atlantis, by a high-definition replica of the twin solid-rocket boosters mounted to the familiar orange external tank. Once inside, guests travel through a series of standing theaters as quick, successive video presentations outline the history of the space shuttle program. The videos serve as the perfect transition as guests are then able to enter the full museum and exhibit areas - an experience that must be seen in person to fully appreciate.

Inside the exhibit hall, Atlantis is displayed with cargo bay doors open and at an angle that allows guests to fully appreciate every aspect of the orbiter. The multi-level building has numerous artifacts from the space program and guests should allow several hours to fully explore the contents. There's even a replica of the Hubble Space Telescope and and plenty of hands-on, interactive exhibits designed just for kids.

No doubt the museum directors from the other locations lucky enough to land one of the other four Space Shuttle's will make their way to the east coast of Florida to see the Atlantis exhibit. And likewise, they will know that the bar for excellence has been set very high for the other museums to follow since KSC and Delaware North got it right in a big way with Atlantis.

Photo credit: NASA