Savanna Bridge Dedication Event Attracts NASA Exhibit
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (“NASA”) will be bringing a traveling exhibit known as the Journey to Tomorrow to Savanna June 15 through June 17 in connection with a series of celebratory events planned in connection with the dedication of the new Dale Gardner Veterans Memorial Bridge.
Other guests include Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner; Senator Tammy Duckworth & U.S. Rep Cheri Bustos; Three former NASA Astronauts; State Commanders of the VFW & Am. Legion; The Navy Great Lakes Marching Band
NASA’s Journey to Tomorrow traveling exhibit immerses visitors in a fun-filled interactive experience, which includes learning stations and engaging activities. Guests will be challenged to think about how aircraft fly; what it’s like to live and work in space; and how the planets orbit the sun. Materials regarding current NASA missions are on display, as well as, information on advanced aeronautics research and NASA’s efforts to send future human explorers to the moon and to Mars and beyond. The exhibit also features a genuine moon rock artifact returned to Earth by the crew of Apollo 17 lunar landing mission.
The NASA exhibit is one of several activities planned for Father’s Day weekend, June 16 and 17. On Saturday, June 16 at 10:00 am there will be a Veterans Parade through downtown Savanna featuring political and veteran dignitaries and a large contingent of local veterans from both sides of the river. There will be five high school marching bands and the Navy Great Lakes Marching Band has been invited to participate as well. Following the parade there will be a Veterans Memorial Ceremony in Marquette Park, a local river park, honoring both living and deceased area veterans.
The Journey to Tomorrow exhibit will be in Savanna at the corner of Main Street and Murray Street and will be open to the public free of charge from Friday afternoon until 4:00 pm on Sunday.
A program entitled “Being an Astronaut” will be held on Sunday beginning at 11:00 am at the West Carroll High School. The program will be conducted by former NASA Astronauts, Richard H. Truly, Robert L. Stewart and Daniel C. Brandenstein, who will describe what is like to rocket into space, experience weightlessness, walk in space and travel around the world in less than two hours!
The main event on Sunday will be the Bridge Dedication Ceremony which will also take place in Marquette Park along the Mississippi River. Governor Bruce Rauner is expected to preside over the dedication ceremony along with the three former NASA Astronauts who were colleagues of Dale Gardner a recently deceased former NASA Astronaut who was a Savanna High School graduate. Illinois Representative Tony McCombie and Illinois State Senator Neil Anderson, who were instrumental in the naming of the new bridge, will also be speaking at the dedication ceremony.
In addition, a fly-over is planned during the bridge dedication, weather permitting. More details on all the activities and events planned for this special weekend can be found on the Bridge Celebration Planners Facebook site entitled Savanna-Sabula Bridge Celebration Planners.