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  Spacefest IV, June 2012, Tucson, Arizona (Page 7)

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Author Topic:   Spacefest IV, June 2012, Tucson, Arizona
Jay Gallentine
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Posts: 249
From: Shorewood, MN, USA
Registered: Sep 2004

posted 05-22-2012 08:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Gallentine   Click Here to Email Jay Gallentine     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I've more or less fine-tuned my presentation and am looking forward to meeting those who are going on the UA Lunar and Planetary Lab tour.

See you there!

jiffyq58
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From: Durham, NC, USA
Registered: Jun 2011

posted 05-22-2012 10:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jiffyq58   Click Here to Email jiffyq58     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Not going on that tour, Jay, but I'll see you in the bar!

Mr. Apollo 17
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From: Ashland, OH USA
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posted 05-28-2012 12:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr. Apollo 17   Click Here to Email Mr. Apollo 17     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Every collectSPACE'r that is going to Spacefest I wish you safe travels to Arizona and lightyears of fun there! Travel safe and have fun meeting the astronauts there!

SkyMan1958
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From: CA.
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posted 05-28-2012 04:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SkyMan1958   Click Here to Email SkyMan1958     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have heard tell that both Gene Cernan and Tom Jones will sign their books "for free". Does anyone know if this is true? Also, does anyone know if there are any other astronauts attending that will sign their books "for free". Thank you.

Spacefest
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From: Tucson, AZ USA
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posted 05-29-2012 03:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacefest   Click Here to Email Spacefest     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SkyMan1958:
I have heard tell that both Gene Cernan and Tom Jones will sign their books "for free". Does anyone know if this is true?
Tom will. I don't think Gene does anymore.
quote:
...does anyone know if there are any other astronauts attending that will sign their books "for free".
Mike Mullane, Al Worden. Of course you'll have to buy the book first.

fredtrav
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From: Birmingham AL USA
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posted 05-29-2012 04:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for fredtrav   Click Here to Email fredtrav     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What about Scott Carpenter?

scrpien
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From: Arizona
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posted 05-29-2012 07:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for scrpien   Click Here to Email scrpien     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
So will the book have to be purchased there or can I bring books that I have already purchased?

SteveG
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From: Scottsdale, AZ
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posted 06-02-2012 07:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SteveG   Click Here to Email SteveG     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I misplaced my notes from today on Vance Brand's pricing. He was $80, correct, for a photo? The website says $45. Can someone verify. Thanks -

Oldbru
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From: Phoenix, AZ
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posted 06-03-2012 12:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Oldbru     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I think Vance Brand was $85.00.

DChudwin
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From: Lincolnshire IL USA
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posted 06-03-2012 08:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for DChudwin   Click Here to Email DChudwin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Got back tonight from a wonderful weekend at Spacefest 4 outside of Tucson. For those who could not go, here is a run down:

The hotel, the J.W. Marriott, is situated in scenic desert with all kinds of saguaro cacti and other flora unique to the desert in Arizona. The rooms are spacious and Novaspace negotiated a $109 per night room rate, which for this type of luxury resort is very favorable. The layout is conducive to interactions, with a Starbucks and a bar contiguous to an outdoor patio with a beautiful view of mountains and Tucson. There are several pools, and the resort offers other special services including a native American who does a healing ceremony in the morning and free tequila shots at 5:30 p.m. The only negatives were a $12.95 charge for wireless access and a meeting room which rivaled the Arctic on one of the days (later remedied). But enough of the travelogue…

There were fewer Apollo astronauts this year, with Lovell, Stafford and Schweickart absent. However, six Moonwalkers were present (of the nine living) and Vance Brand and shuttle astronauts Mullane and Jones were added to the line-up. Scott Carpenter had to cancel at the last minute due to health issues.

There was a comprehensive speakers program which featured scientists, engineers and authors. For me, this was the most interesting part of the weekend. There were often two or three speakers presenting at one time so it made for some hard choices. Some of the presentations were humorous (Phil Plaitt, the self-styled “Bad Astronomer.” on the Mayan calendar hoax), while others were brilliant lectures on current or future NASA programs (the best to me were Dr. Britney Schmidt on Europa and Dr. Mark Rayman, who is chief engineer of the DAWN mission which is now orbiting Vesta). The major missing scientist was Dr. Carolyn Porco, who has been a hit a past Spacefests with her imaging from Cassini.

Besides the individual speakers, there were excellent panel presentations which allowed different perspectives of important subjects. There were panels on asteroids, spacesuits, Apollo, Skylab and Mars. I especially enjoyed the Apollo panel which was moderated by Andy Chaikin and featured Duke, Haise, Worden, Gordon and Cunningham.

The autographs, art show, and vendors were in a very large ballroom. The setup this time was better, giving enough room for each activity. The art show included top space artists including Alan Bean, Kim Poor, Michael Carroll, Chris Calle, Dan Durda and many others. Each astronaut had a table with an assistant. There were few long lines for autographs; Alan Bean seemed to have the longest. The Skylab astronauts (Weitz, Lousma and Gibson) appeared to have the least customers, probably because of an increase in their autograph fees.

There was a Friday lunch with an astronaut, a Saturday lunch with one of the other speakers, the Saturday night banquet, and a Sunday breakfast with an astronaut. I was at Buzz Aldrin’s table for the banquet and it was a great experience—Buzz was friendly, shook hands with everyone at the table before and after, took pictures with us, and engaged in conversation the entire dinner. Andy Chaikin gave the keynote speech, an eloquent call for continued exploration.

I was at the table with Vance and Bev Brand, and Mike and Donna Mullane, for the Sunday breakfast and all were charming, especially the wives. Mrs. Brand offered to take a picture of me and her husband when I had no one else to snap the picture. (By the way, I was gently poked fun at with regard to name-dropping, but it is hard to convey the events without some identifications).

The food at all these events was buffet-style and heavily oriented to Southwestern food (not my favorite); however, for hotel food it was good. One improvement was the use of place cards instead of tickets to the meal. This obviated the need to get there right when the door opened to get a good seat.

The outstanding movie “The Wonder of it All” was presented on Friday. Director Jeff Roth, who was at the screening, interviewed seven of the Moonwalkers for the film and used these interviews for them to reflect on how landing on the Moon affected them.

There was also a live auction of space memorabilia by Donnis Willis’ company Lunar Legacies. It was interesting to me to watch the process, which included a live auctioneer at Spacefest as well as telephone and internet bidding.

Many of the paying customer guests had attended previous Spacefests so it was almost like a reunion for us, as well as the astronauts. I enjoyed seeing old friends too many to mention (no, I did not know every one there!). Besides the U.S., there were guests from Canada, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand and perhaps other countries as well, giving an international flavor the event.

One of the most rewarding parts of Spacefest, besides the organized activities, is the opportunity for informal interactions with the astronauts. I had great conversations outside the formal program with Mike and Donna Mullane, Fred Haise (over oatmeal), Al Worden, Jack Lousma and others. I’d like to thank them for their time and patience.

Each Spacefest has improved on the previous, and Novaspace has already set dates for Spacefest 5 next year. Tremendous credit goes to Sally and Kim Poor, as well as their able assistants including Randy Clamons, Rob Gallagher, Linda Watson and many others. Spacefest is a major undertaking requiring lots of hard work, organization and imagination. If you have never been to one, don’t miss it.

Spacefest
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From: Tucson, AZ USA
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posted 06-04-2012 04:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacefest   Click Here to Email Spacefest     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks, Dr. Chudwin, for your comprehensive review and kind words.

I just produce the programs, schedule, agenda, and logistics, but leave it to my able (but aging) crew to actually make it work. Then, all I do is cruise the show on a scooter collecting compliments.

I agree some of the talk rooms were cold. I was cold much of the time (though all you had to do was step outside into the "dry" heat to warm up).

Greggy_D
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posted 06-04-2012 04:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Greggy_D   Click Here to Email Greggy_D     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How were the attendance numbers compared to past years?

jtheoret
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From: Albuquerque, NM USA
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 06-04-2012 04:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jtheoret   Click Here to Email jtheoret     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Very nice summary David and an excellent review of a fantastic event. The talks were good, and especially the two you singled out were my favorites as well. It was very much like a reunion of people you actually wanted to have a reunion with as well as some new additions. My 15 year old son was with me and the astronauts were readily available and happy to talk with him. We had a nice chat with Ed Mitchell before the banquet, with Mike Mullane (we are both from Albuquerque) and a great impromtu talk with Fred Haise on Sunday before we left - he was generous with his time and willingness to answer questions. Kim and Sally did a great job and also my thanks to all the support and volunteer staff.

My favorite part - I had Al Bean and Dick Gordon (who led a touching toast in honor of Pete Conrad whose birthday it was) sign ironic and amusing inscriptions on one of Beans Prints, Is Anyone Out There? Then when my son and I tried to take a photo with Al and Dick and the poster those two clowned around for a series of really fun shots: Dick crouching behind the print like Kilroy, Al giving Dick bunny - everyone laughing - it's series of pics that becomes among my most treasured.

Another highlight, I was speaking with Carter Emmart, the visualization director at Hayden Planetarium, with my son, and Al Bean - and then Carter started showing his painting and drawings - to Bean and then Chris Calle came over and Carter was showing some of the finest pencil drawings I have ever seen - telling Calle he was inspired by his dad - just amazing and fantastic human beings all around.
Thanks again Spacefest.

Spacefest
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From: Tucson, AZ USA
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posted 06-04-2012 05:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacefest   Click Here to Email Spacefest     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Greggy_D:
How were the attendance numbers compared to past years?

Attendance was about the same as last year, which was a little disappointing considering the amount of coverage it got (lots), but it was a potent crowd, and almost everyone had record sales.

Larry McGlynn
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posted 06-04-2012 05:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I second everybody's comment. It was a hell of a good time.

The hotel was top shelf. The setup was great. There was time to relax and have informal interactions with astronauts and friends. Tucson has some interesting places to visit including the Titan Missile Museum which is a quirky, must see place.

My hats off to Kim, Sally, Randy, Linda, all their crew and the volunteers for this show. It was fantastic.

I want to give my highest compliment in that I learned a lot. There was a tremendous amount of new information given in the lectures. It's not an autograph show, it is a educational conference.

I have booked my Universal Ticket for next year already.

Jay Chladek
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From: Bellevue, NE, USA
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posted 06-04-2012 05:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I got home today (long story, but the short is I spent a night in Denver on the way home). It was my second Spacefest and very enjoyable. Kim decided to bring me on as staff and I hope I lived up to that challenge, trying to keep things I had control of running as smoothly as I could and helping out in other small ways. In a show this big, you have to keep things a little free flowing, yet nudge things a little bit here and there as needed. Tuscon seems to be the proper environment for that though as the atmosphere of the Starr Pass is perfect for it.

Granted I didn't get a chance to do a lot as I spent most of my time working the big panel discussion room. But I came away with some excellent memories. I renewed old friendships and forged some new ones (such as putting a face to DChudwin's name, great guy and a very smart individual). It was also pretty gratifying seeing so many of you that did go coming up to say hello and mentioning that they read my posts and enjoyed them... great, now I have to live up to those high standards.

So now I just have a book to finish and I'll probably see a few of you again next year (old faces AND new ones).

schnappsicle
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From: Houston, TX, USA
Registered: Jan 2012

posted 06-04-2012 06:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Carpenter cancellation really hurt me. He was one of the one's I was looking forward to getting a live autograph from.

People also also seem to have forgotten about Bruce McCandless. Apparently I was the only one looking forward to getting another autograph from him.

In spite of the few no-shows, it was a great show. I missed the talks, however. I couldn't see spending money on something I wasn't going to take home and frame.

I was only there on Friday, but I was happy with the guests and the crowd. I really appreciated all the time I had to talk to all the astronauts I wanted to, even the ones I didn't get an autograph from.

SkyMan1958
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posted 06-04-2012 07:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SkyMan1958   Click Here to Email SkyMan1958     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It was a GREAT time!!! Both fun and educational.

It's the little vignette's that most stick in my mind... like the "weapons deal" (not really) in the parking lot on saturday night while the rap music from the wedding party was blaring.

GREAT Show!!! Thank you VERY much to everyone who made it happen!!!

Grounded!
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From: Bennington, Vermont, USA
Registered: Feb 2011

posted 06-05-2012 09:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Grounded!   Click Here to Email Grounded!     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
We arrived home yesterday evening after leapfrogging from airport to airport across the country all day. It was good to get home and eat some real food. One can only go so long on vanilla cookies and little bags of peanuts.

This was our second Spacefest event. Most of my time last year was spent meeting astronauts for the first time and getting autographs and photos.

Although last year was a lot of fun, I went to Tucson with a different goal in mind... namely, to experience some of the other wonderful things Spacefest has to offer.

Sure, I got some autographs,(needed a crew completion on one item), but much more time was spent admiring the artwork, attending talks, and meeting and chatting with artists, authors, vendors, cS members and other attendees. We also went on the Pima tour. Being able to pitch in as a volunteer was also something that I found to be most rewarding.

So for myself, this years event was just as gratifying as last years, but in a different sort of way.

It is most amazing the way that Kim, Sally and staff are able to pull it all together each time and create this few days of magic in Tucson known as Spacefest. I admire their skill and energy. To them, a big thank you is in order!!!

Looking forward to next year.

Spacefest
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From: Tucson, AZ USA
Registered: Jan 2009

posted 06-05-2012 04:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacefest   Click Here to Email Spacefest     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by schnappsicle:
People also also seem to have forgotten about Bruce McCandless. Apparently I was the only one looking forward to getting another autograph from him.
Capt. McCandless asked to give it a rest, as he was feeling a little overexposed, and his sales were dropping. The same was true for Schweickart and Searfoss.

As for Carpenter; he's 87 now, and keeps up a pretty hectic schedule. All of the Apollo astronauts are in the same boat, so get used to it. Rare will be the show where all invitees come.

Grounded!
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From: Bennington, Vermont, USA
Registered: Feb 2011

posted 06-05-2012 08:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Grounded!   Click Here to Email Grounded!     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I would like to put 2 cents in regarding Kim's post above. It is a shame that astronauts McCandless, Schweikart and Searfoss feel "overexposed".

I do understand how they feel and please bear with me while I try to express my thoughts,

You only have to stand in the astronaut autograph area for a few minutes to see that many of them are biding their time and staying entertained by talking with each other.

Consider all the exceptional people who have gathered together for an event such as this...The astronauts, a national treasure that is being now taken away from us by father time, the authors who educate us by writing down the history of spaceflight in a permanent and entertaining way, the scientists, astronomers and researchers who look to the future and further our understanding of our vast universe. How about the artists who care enough about our subject to put so much of themselves into such astonishingly beautiful works?

When you go to Spacefest you get to walk among them!

Might I suggest that the problem is not one of "overexposure" but underexposure. A "thumbs up" on this board is nice, but it may also be just so much of preaching to the choir.

I know that a lot of advertising went towards this event, but advertising can't overcome the apathy that many feel about things that are so near and dear to the rest of us. I'll bet that a large majority of attendees to this years event are the same people who were there last year. There should be a line of cars all the way into downtown Tucson trying to get up to Starr Pass to share this experience with us!

Between now and Spacefest V, perhaps those of us in "the choir" should try a little harder to promote the event. Talk to friends and co-workers, put an article in your local newspaper, anything to light a spark and get people interested. A larger crowd benefits everyone.

Anyone feel the same?

JasonIUP
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From: PA
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posted 06-05-2012 09:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JasonIUP     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Regarding overexposure, some astronauts probably see attendance at shows and signings as a business. It might be nice to talk to their fans and see each other, but if their gross revenue isn't what they expect it to be, they figure out how to get it there. For some, it's skipping a show to build up demand. Many people wouldn't accept a job that pays less than they think they should get; they'd rather stay home until the better-paying job comes along. It's the same thing with some astronauts.

mjanovec
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From: Midwest, USA
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posted 06-06-2012 12:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I suspect the declining sales for the astronauts is directly related to the skyrocketing prices for their signatures (and not overexposure). For example, some of the Skylab guys have doubled or tripled their prices in recent years...right as the economy started to hit a lot of collectors hard in the wallet.

I respect that astronauts can charge whatever they like for their autograph. But they should realize their prices are keeping a lot of potential customers away.

It cost roughly $1900 to obtain one signature from each astronaut guest at Spacefest...assuming you didn't ask for completions, inscriptions, etc. That's a lot to pay for signatures that are neither rare or particularly valuable.

Spacefest
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posted 06-06-2012 12:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacefest   Click Here to Email Spacefest     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That's balderdash. McCandless has been $40 forever. Aldrin could easily get a base fee of $750.

mjanovec
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posted 06-06-2012 12:59 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Spacefest:
Aldrin could easily get a base fee of $750.

Not from a sane collector, he won't.

ColinBurgess
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posted 06-06-2012 01:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ColinBurgess   Click Here to Email ColinBurgess     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This was one truly great event, and I cannot speak too highly of the superb effort put into making it such a success by Kim and Sally and their amazing team. Like others, I was rather surprised that the anticipated crowds on Saturday fell somewhat short of everyone's expectations, but that was through no fault of the organisers. The event publicity was certainly out there in abundance, with newspaper and television exposure highlighting the significance of the event, and I know that those locals and others who attended had a great time, with easy and often prolonged access to the space explorers.

This being my third consecutive Spacefest I was delighted to see so many friendly folks I've come to know well at this show, and I am constantly amazed at how many Aussies make it to these events year after year. They really are a dedicated and delightful bunch of space enthusiasts. You have to be when faced with a trip home of around 30 hours including flights and lengthy transits.

The resort hotel, the rooms, the staff and the amenities were absolutely impeccable. While it may have been quite hot during the day, the stunning scenery more than made up for a little discomfort. The food supplied for the different events was first class, and I love staying somewhere where all the employees smile and greet you as they walk past. The layout of the main signing hall was so much better this time, with last year's "maze" replaced by a far more open and eye-pleasing plan. It was also good having a snack bar available in the main hall where visitors could purchase some food items along with hot and cold beverages. The different talks and panel discussions were just wonderful - those that I managed to see in a pretty crowded schedule - and the astronauts were just the greatest and most accommodating bunch of people, especially when approached by young people, who appreciated meeting and holding interesting conversations with some very extraordinary and famous people. I take my hat off to the astronauts and other signers; they know where the future lies.

I really had a ball this year in Tucson, not only reacquainting myself with so many friends, but meeting new ones in such a relaxed and well-planned environment. All in all, just a wondeful, wonderful event, and all credit to Kim and Sally and the gang for the best one yet. I'll be there again next year.

Two suggestions for next year: why not pay the speaker's fee of Neil Armstrong to appear and have him give a talk in the big auditorium, and perhaps say a few words at the banquet? I'm sure people wouldn't mind paying a good-size entry fee to his talk to cover all his costs. Of course there'd be no autographs. The other possibility would be to invite Tom Hanks along. As a famed and well-respected space enthusiast, I'm sure he might consider attending (although he might request a non-signing policy) and once again he might like to give a talk one day in the big room and maybe at the banquet. I'm sure people will flock to something like this, and Tom may even cuntersign one or two high-end items for the annual banquet auction. Get either of those two famous gents along and I'm sure there'd be far larger crowds in attendance. However these are only suggestions for consideration.

Spacefest IV: 10 out of 10, everyone.

HistorianMom
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posted 06-06-2012 08:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for HistorianMom   Click Here to Email HistorianMom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I think the events/signatures are probably about "right-priced" for the market, in that if you think about it, there are a plethora of high-priced astronaut events, if you add up all those the ASF sponsors with Spacefest, yet they seem to all sell out. If the prices were lower, the crowds would be greater, and the events wouldn't be so special.

With that said, we managed Spacefest III last year. It was a month's salary, but worth every penny. My kid mowed lawns for six months to save up money for autographs, and he ended up with about half as many as he would have liked, but he was still ecstatic. I told him that Spacefest was a once-in-a-lifetime event for us, but it was so much fun that as soon as we got back from III, I was saving for IV. I was selfishly a little bummed when it was announced IV would be in 2012 instead of 2013, because we need two years to save for a Spacefest. But we are already looking forward to V, and if the prices for Universals don't go up too much, we will, God Willing, be there.

Astronaut cancellations are a fact of life. We were supposed to have a meal with Dave Scott last year that never happened. It was disappointing, but I was more mad that we hadn't been told in advance than I was that it happened at all. I had read Scott's book in anticipation of the meal, and not being the expert that many of you all are, was frantically looking up the bio of Ed Gibson on my phone when we found out five minutes before the meal that that's who we'd be eating with (Gibson was wonderful).

The autographs are nice, but I am sure some of the astronauts keep their prices high so they don't have to sign so many. They can charge 200 each and sign ten an hour, or they can charge 100 and sign twice as many without making any more money.

schnappsicle
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From: Houston, TX, USA
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posted 06-06-2012 09:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Spacefest:
Aldrin could easily get a base fee of $750.
I'd be more than happy to pay that if he wouldn't limit himself to 15 words and stop charging for things like date and "LMP".

I wouldn't necessarily want him to write a novel on my photo, but I have always wanted one with the inscription of the plaque (21 words) in his handwriting on one of the Apollo 11 panoramas.

Somehow 'Magnificent Desolation" misses the historical impact of the event.

AJ
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posted 06-06-2012 09:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AJ   Click Here to Email AJ     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As someone who has not been able (for a variety of reasons) to attend the last two Spacefests, I've been closely following this discussion. While I agree that some fees are too expensive for most of us, and some have gone up, I will probably always fall on the side of the astronauts (even Buzz!).

These are not young men. I have almost universally found them to be gracious, friendly, and genuinely pleasant to interact with. But I would imagine that as much fun as they might have, these types of weekends, whether they are Spacefest or ASF, are tiring for them. I would not blame any one of them for deciding to skip one or just quit doing shows altogether.

In terms of fees, maybe they raise their fees to make their weekend at the show more worth all the travel. Or maybe they see their colleagues charging more and figure they should/could do the same. I don't know.

What I do know is, if you don't like it, don't pay it. I think the majority of the fees are fair and the ones I don't I simply don't pay. In the end, I feel that the experience is what you remember and is ultimately worth more than ink on a page.

Aztecdoug
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posted 06-06-2012 10:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Aztecdoug   Click Here to Email Aztecdoug     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, I did my research on the waterslide. Head first on the stomach is the way to go. Head first on your back just leaves you looking up at the sky and wondering when you are going to hit the water.

I also found that getting out for my morning walk at 6am was the easiest path for me. Even by 7am it was getting a little bit warm. Walking counter clockwise around the resort made the hills around the Starr Pass Resort a little gentler. I did walk clockwise up that main drive one day in the afternoon at about 105F. That was a bit too manly for me. I could have done it again, but why?

I also had the pleasure of enjoying the Catalina Barbeque Co. & Sports Bar clubhouse down the road on the golf course. It was an easy shuttle ride and it is still part of the Starr Pass resort. You can charge your meals etc. to your room. The prices were a wee bit better and the BBQ was out of this world. The Brisket Burnt Ends were just fantastic. It was about .8 of a mile if you need a walk. It is a nice way to get away from it all with out really leaving the comfort of the Starr Pass resort.

The wildlife was interesting. I saw a javelina crossing the road the first night I was coming back from the Catalina BBQ Co. on the guest parking drive. That is not something I see in the backyard back home.

Of course the show was amazing as everyone else has reported. There are those magical moments that go unscripted which really send it over the top. I think everyone knows what those are about. Running into an astro in your hallway, on an elevator, sharing a diet coke at the bar, etc.

Well done Kim Sally and all. I look forward to next year, and the next, and the...

albatron
Member

Posts: 2103
From: Stuart, Florida, USA
Registered: Jun 2000

posted 06-06-2012 02:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for albatron   Click Here to Email albatron     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Aztecdoug:
I also had the pleasure of enjoying the Catalina Barbeque Co. & Sports Bar clubhouse down the road on the golf course.
I do believe there are two astronauts, you, me, the McCulleys, and a few more that are still full from the Catalina BBQ.

Aztecdoug
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Posts: 1330
From: Huntington Beach
Registered: Feb 2000

posted 06-06-2012 03:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Aztecdoug   Click Here to Email Aztecdoug     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by albatron:
I do believe there are 2 Astronauts, you, me, the McCulleys, and a few more that are still full from the Catalina BBQ.

Right, I forgot to mention we opted for the all you can eat mode. We have sources which reported that cold leftover mac and cheese is the breakfast of champions! I personally had to switch over to fruit cups at Starbucks in the morning after the Catalina BBQ and the Saturday night banquet. That was two nights in a row of food heaven.

arjuna
unregistered
posted 06-06-2012 04:30 PM           Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
So for those of us who couldn't make it, is there talk of a Spacefest V?

Jay Chladek
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Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 06-06-2012 05:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, as far as I know there will be. It will be held in the same location, but to my knowledge it has been moved up two weeks to the weekend before Memorial Day. Personally I think the location is a winner. I'll have to make sure I get a chance to visit the BBQ place next year (I didn't think to take the shuttle to it, oh well).

By the way, laying on that grass on Saturday night for the star party was very comfortable. I almost fell asleep on it while staring up at the moon.

I will also point out that everyone I met at this show were class acts all the way. My only regret is not chatting with Ed Gibson and Paul Weitz until the final day of the show. Chatting with Apollo astronauts are great and all since many of them went to the moon, but the Skylab guys are the hidden treasures in my opinion.

The experiences these guys had are giving us just as much of a foundation for the future manned exploration of the solar system as anything else. Having Gibson tell me a story of replacing an antenna on Skylab in a spot not designed for EVA servicing was a rather riveting tale.

spkjb
Member

Posts: 95
From: Merritt Island, Florida USA
Registered: May 2011

posted 06-06-2012 07:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spkjb   Click Here to Email spkjb     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Our contact and signing experiences with astronauts will be some of the poignant experiences of our short lives.

The signatures, artifacts and other exposures to this incredible time in history may not be appreciated now or in our immediate progeny's lifetimes but... what we were and still are privileged to experience is very, very special.

We have lived in a period like none other in history and never to be repeated. We were blessed to be alive and witness man (an earth life form) leaving this Earth.

If one can afford the signatures charged then the fee is worth the experience alone of interacting with the astronaut, not counting the present and future value of the signatures.

These artifacts/signatures/items etc. (assuming they can be properly archivally preserved) are top of the list treasures of human and life on earth's history. They are the Columbus, Magellan, Cpt. Cook artifacts to the nth degree. There will be a time in future when what you have collected will be of much greater value (inflation included) than current prices. These artifacts, signatures etc. appear to be under valued and under appreciated but this will not be permanent. The events, artifacts and items associated with this time are truly and forever unique: Humans left this planet for another world.

Enjoy the contacts with these wonderful astronauts and pay what you can. The Spacefest experience and astronaut interactions are something that will be at top of list when rating one's life experiences(even if occasionally not living up to expectations).

Bloviating but I guess value is in eye of participant. I just find it hard to place small value on these wonderful interactions and items. If I feel a signature or artifact overpriced or I can not afford, then I not pay. This somewhat small market appears to be very efficient. Astronauts not signing because of low volume or charging what appears to be excessive rates seem to have a rhyme to the reason.

Could not come this year, but looking forward to V.

Rizz
Member

Posts: 1208
From: Upcountry, Maui, Hawaii
Registered: Mar 2002

posted 06-06-2012 09:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rizz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by spkjb:
The Spacefest experience and astronaut interactions are something that will be at top of list when rating one's life experiences.

I'd like to second that. Kim, Sally & Co are to be commended for bringing experiences like this to fruition. As mentioned above, the talks/discussions and artists as well as the food and location make this event even more inviting.

This was the first year we could not attend, but we'll be there in 2013.

MCroft04
Member

Posts: 1219
From: Smithfield, Me, USA
Registered: Mar 2005

posted 06-06-2012 09:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MCroft04   Click Here to Email MCroft04     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I need help paying Gene Cernan's fee for $500 per question at lunch on Friday. What an unbeievable great guy!

Daugherty54
Member

Posts: 269
From: Cabot, Arkansas, USA
Registered: Sep 2010

posted 06-07-2012 04:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Daugherty54   Click Here to Email Daugherty54     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Today's mail brought my autographed items from Spacefest. With school closing about the same time I simply couldn't fit it into my schedule. BIG kudos to Steve Gruber for getting my 11x14 Apollo 13 damaged SM signed by Haise and Lousma. Someday I'll get Lovell then I have a (to me) priceless print.

I simply cannot express enough how satisfied I am with Steve's service. What a quick mail time too! Thanks and I will recommend him to anyone who can't make the trip

Gilbert
Member

Posts: 935
From: Carrollton, GA USA
Registered: Jan 2003

posted 06-08-2012 02:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gilbert   Click Here to Email Gilbert     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I would like to publicly thank Steve also. He got my items signed for me and I already have them. Fantastic service! Thanks Steve, from those of us who could not make it to Spacefest. Great job!

ilbasso
Member

Posts: 1494
From: Greensboro, NC USA
Registered: Feb 2006

posted 06-08-2012 02:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes indeed, thank you Steve! Sorry I couldn't be at Spacefest this time, but it was very reassuring to know that my item was in good hands.

I've been the person carting around items to get signed for other collectors, and I know it often isn't fun to juggle that much stuff. I deeply appreciate Steve doing this for me.


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