Sunday, April 05, 2009

JPL Open House 2009

On Saturday and Sunday, May 2 and 3, the 2009 JPL Open House will take place in Pasadena, California, and I'm happy to say that this year, I'll be there. Although I lived in the Pasadena area from 1980 to 1988, and I've visited JPL several times on business, I've never been to an open house. Strange but true. So I'm pretty excited. I found this video which gives a pretty good idea of what goes on at a JPL Open House.

JPL Solar System Ambassadors are offered the chance to help out at the open house for a few hours on one of the two weekend days if they can make it to the Lab at their own expense. So I signed up for Saturday morning. I don't know what I'll be helping with yet, but if you go to JPL that morning, I'll be the one wearing... nothing related to space! That's one of the ground rules. Ambassadors are "civilian" volunteers, not employees of NASA, JPL, or Caltech, and they want to make this clear for any Ambassadors who are helping out at one of the mission booths. So we aren't allowed to wear anything with a NASA or mission logo or even anything space-related that is non-NASA. I assume I will be allowed to wear my 2009 Solar System Ambassador badge.

I'm looking forward to seeing a lot of cool space stuff and to meeting some of the JPL staff for the various missions, and maybe even a few of my fellow Ambassadors. If you're in the Los Angeles area that weekend and you're into space, the JPL Open House is a great opportunity.

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