KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (April 23, 2007) - Veteran Space Shuttle Astronauts Michael L. Coats, Steven A. Hawley and Jeffrey A. Hoffman will join an elite group of American space heroes as they are inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame® during a public ceremony at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex on Saturday, May 5 at 3:00 p.m. They will join the ranks of legendary space pioneers like Neil Armstrong, John Glenn, Alan Shepard, Sally Ride and John Young.
This is the sixth group of Space Shuttle astronauts named to the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame. Earlier inductees represent the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Skylab and Apollo-Soyuz programs. With the addition of Coats, currently the director of Johnson Space Center; Hawley, whose mission helped deploy the Hubble Space Telescope; and Hoffman, the first astronaut to log 1,000 hours aboard the space shuttle, the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame will have honored 66 of America’s space explorers.
More than 30 astronauts have accepted invitations to attend and honor the latest inductees, including John Glenn, Scott Carpenter, John Young, Bob Crippen, Jim Lovell, Al Worden and Walt Cunningham. As part of the weekend celebration, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will feature autograph sessions and book signings with current Hall of Fame astronauts on May 5 and 6.
The U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony is included with admission to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Induction weekend ticket packages are available for $70 plus tax for adults and $50 plus tax for children and include the following:
- Two-day Admission to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex and the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame
- Reserved seating at the Induction Ceremony at 3:00 p.m.
- Commemorative poster of the 2007 Inductees
- A special Lunch With the Astronauts on May 5 at 11:30 a.m. Lunch will include five members of the first Space Shuttle Astronaut class: Rick Hauck, Dan Brandenstein, Brewster Shaw, Hoot Gibson, and Fred Gregory.
U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame Induction weekend tickets are available by telephone at 321-449-4400 or online at www.kennedyspacecenter.com. Local accommodations are also available.
The 2007 inductees were selected by a committee of current Hall of Fame astronauts, former NASA officials and flight directors, historians, journalists and other space authorities. The process is administered by the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation. To be eligible, an astronaut must have made his or her first flight at least 17 years before the induction year and must be retired at least five years from NASA's astronaut corps. Candidates must be a U.S. citizen, NASA-trained and must have orbited the earth at least once. In balloting, committee members evaluate not only an individual's flight accomplishments but also how he or she contributed to the success and future success of the U.S. Space Program in post-flight assignments.
About Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex opens at 9 a.m. Closing times vary according to season. The Visitor Complex is open daily except December 25 and certain launch days. Admission includes all exhibits, Astronaut Encounter, IMAX® space films, KSC Tour, and the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, featuring historic spacecraft, flight simulators and the world's largest collection of personal astronaut mementos. Admission is $38 + tax for adults and $28 + tax for children ages 3-11. The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Annual Pass is $50 + tax for adults and $35 + tax for children ages 3-11. For more information, call 321-449-4444 or visit www.KennedySpaceCenter.com. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is operated by DNC Parks & Resorts at KSC, Inc., a division of Delaware North Companies, one of the world’s leading hospitality and food service providers.
About the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation
The Astronaut Scholarship Foundation participated in creating a venue where space travelers could be remembered – the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, which opened in 1990. Since 2002, DNC Parks & Resorts at KSC, Inc., operators of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex for NASA, has operated the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame. Today, the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation serves as a consultant for the Hall of Fame, which includes supervising the selection of astronauts for the Hall. The Foundation’s mission is to aid the United States in retaining its world leadership in science and technology by providing scholarships to exceptional college students pursuing degrees in selected fields. To date, the foundation has awarded more than $2.3 million to deserving students. For more information, log on to www.AstronautScholarship.org or call 321-269-6119.
Note: Photographs and biographies of the astronaut inductees are available by contacting any listed media contacts.