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  Cruise Center opens "Splashdown Grand Turk"

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Author Topic:   Cruise Center opens "Splashdown Grand Turk"
Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-31-2011 03:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Grand Turk Cruise Center release
One-of-a-Kind Exhibit on NASA's Mercury Space Program Opens at Grand Turk Cruise Center

Grand Turk Cruise Center and the community of Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands celebrated the grand opening of a unique exhibit commemorating the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Mercury space program and the historic 1962 splashdown of the Friendship 7 capsule off the coast of Grand Turk.

The event was attended by representatives of the Turks and Caicos Islands Government, students from local schools, representatives from Carnival Corporation and plc and Grand Turk Cruise Center, and guests and crew from Holland America Line's cruise ship, the Nieuw Amsterdam and Princess Cruises' Ruby Princess which were in port that day.

Special guest speakers included Janet E. Petro, deputy director of the John F. Kennedy Space Center and former NASA astronaut Winston Scott.

"Splashdown Grand Turk" is a 3,500 sq. foot attraction celebrating the unique relationship of the American human spaceflight mission and its importance to Grand Turk's history.

Located on the south side of the Grand Turk Cruise Center, the free exhibit features amazing replicas unique to the Mercury space program, including a scaled 20-foot-tall Atlas rocket and a full-size, three-dimensional replica of astronaut John Glenn in spacesuit, and, of course, a detailed replica of the Friendship 7 capsule, which splashed into the Atlantic in 1962, a few short miles from the island of Grand Turk.

Storyboards at the exhibit depict the accomplishments of the NASA space program and detail the differences in space equipment of yesterday and today while offering an overview of the current space program and future plans.

"This exhibit together with the replica of the Friendship capsule at the entrance of the Grand Turk Airport will serve to educate and inform cruise guests, the citizens of Turks and Caicos and other visitors to the islands about this fascinating connection between Grand Turk and the early days of the Mercury space program," said H.E. Governor Gordon Wetherell, governor of the Turks & Caicos Islands, BWI.

"We believe that having this great exhibit at the Grand Turk Cruise Center not only pays homage to the remarkable history of the NASA space program, but also shows the historical richness of the island," said David Candib, director of business development for Carnival Corporation and plc, which operates the Grand Turk Cruise Center.

Opened by Carnival Corporation & plc in 2006, the Grand Turk Cruise Center serves as a gateway to this unique destination and encompasses a state-of-the-art pier and a 14-acre complex offering a variety of shops and restaurants.

The 2011 cruise season will bring 285 ship calls to the Grand Turk Cruise Center carrying approximately 625,000 visitors who will have an opportunity to learn more about Grand Turk's involvement with the NASA space program.

golddog
Member

Posts: 176
From: australia
Registered: Feb 2008

posted 02-01-2011 12:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for golddog     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It would have been quite a splash down for that replica - note the antenna canister is still attached.

AFGAS
Member

Posts: 89
From: Merritt Island, FL
Registered: Feb 2008

posted 02-02-2011 06:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AFGAS   Click Here to Email AFGAS     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And the non-deployed landing bag.

golddog
Member

Posts: 176
From: australia
Registered: Feb 2008

posted 02-03-2011 12:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for golddog     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yeah, and the angle of the impact ain't too good either. Picky, aren't we?

jasonelam
Member

Posts: 443
From: Monticello, KY USA
Registered: Mar 2007

posted 02-03-2011 01:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jasonelam   Click Here to Email jasonelam     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Not to mention the parachute looks like it may have detached too soon. Can we say "OUCH!"

Hart Sastrowardoyo
Member

Posts: 2123
From: Toms River, NJ,USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 02-03-2011 01:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As a frequent cruiser, I now want to find one going to Grand Turk - just so I can paint a "Sigma 7" on it! (Just kidding... I would never commit an act of vandalism. But a gotcha....)

Larry McGlynn
Member

Posts: 805
From: Boston, MA
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 02-03-2011 11:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Been to Grand Turk many times. Used to dive with the migrating whales and dolphins.

The new cruise port is kind of interesting. Has nothing to do with the island, but is a good place to hit dry land, lay in the sun and get in a couple of dives. Just don't go onto the center plaza during the midday. It turns into a solar oven.

There has always been a replica of a Mercury spacecraft in the center of the main rotary to the airport. I have a photo of it somewhere. It says Friendship 7 on it, but it is an early version of the spaceship with the porthole. A taxi driver once told me that they wanted the real Friendship 7 in place of the replica. I smiled at that comment.

I might add that there is litter from the early Space Age all through the Turks & Caicos. On West Caicos Island, I found a lot of rusted debris from a USAF radar site used in down range testing of missles from Cape Canaveral.

All times are CT (US)

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