The Washington Post

Discovery space shuttle will be welcomed to Smithsonian by Marines and a four-day festival


Space shuttle Discovery after leaving the international space station. (Courtesy of NASA)

To welcome the unusual and huge artifact, the National Air and Space Museum announced Tuesday a line-up of public space-related activities beginning April 17 when Discovery is carried on the back of a Boeing 747 into Dulles International Airport.

On its way from the Kennedy Space Center to the airport, the shuttle, which flew more missions than any other in the shuttle fleet, naturally will fly over parts of Washington. The museum is asking the public to participate in “Spot the Shuttle” activities. Then people can upload photos on all the usual photo and social media outlets.

After two days of being what the museum calls “de-mated,” the shuttle will stand on its own.

The official celebration, when the shuttle is transferred from NASA to the Smithsonian, will begin with a parade. The U.S. Marine Drum and Bugle Corps and an astronaut contingent will escort Discovery to its place at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, the hangar-like annex of the Air and Space Museum.

And of course, Washington’s go-to mezzo-soprano, Denyce Graves, will welcome the newest artifact with the national anthem.

The museum has planned 25 programs, including close-up pictures of the Discovery and Enterprise, the space shuttle going to a New York museum, a students day on April 20 and a family weekend April 20-21.

Parking at Udvar-Hazy is $15 and all the details of the festival are on the museum’s Web site.

Comments
Show Comments
0 Comments
Washington Post Subscriptions

Get 2 months of digital access to The Washington Post for just 99¢.

A limited time offer for Apple Pay users.

Buy with
Cancel anytime

$9.99/month after the two month trial period. Sales tax may apply.
By subscribing you agree to our Terms of Service, Digital Products Terms of Sale & Privacy Policy.

Get 2 months of digital access to The Washington Post for just 99¢.

Most Read
Read stories based on reporting for “Trump Revealed,” a broad, comprehensive biography of the life of the president-elect.

lifestyle

Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Close video player
Now Playing