We recently took a trip to Daytona Beach and we noticed there was a scheduled launch at the Kennedy Space Center while we were there, so we bought our tickets in advance (I believe you are able to buy them two weeks in advance.) Unfortunately, the launch was rescheduled (which we knew was a possibility) and we were not able to see the launch. Thankfully NASA live streamed the actual launch on NASA TV and the kids and I were able to watch it before school that morning. I wondered if my kids would actually enjoy the Kennedy Space Center without the launch. I can say, yes, they did enjoy the Kennedy Space Center.
Of course, I had to make the littles space shirts! I found these amazing astronaut children’s fabric panels from Peek-A-Boo fabrics and had to purchase them. I was a little worried they would not arrive in time, however they shipped super fast! I had more than enough time to make them shirts. I used Patterns for Pirates PDF patterns for both of their shirts. Little Dude is wearing a Jolly Roger Raglan and Baby Girl is wearing a Spice Cake Shirt.
Kennedy Space Center Astronaut Fabric PanelShortly after we arrived at Kennedy Space Center, Little Dude found this huge astronaut and requested a picture. He said “Look Mom we match!” I love how excited he gets about the clothes I make him. He also loves the idea of outer space and thoroughly enjoyed Kennedy Space Center, even thought it was a very hot day. We took an air conditioned break to watch the IMAX movie Journey to Space. I did not know how Baby Girl would handle a 3D movie, however she did great. The only parts she did not like were when the rockets launched in the movie. The sound was amazing, but for Baby Girl it was a little overwhelming. A quick covering of her ears and she was fine again. Little Dude loved the movie, as did I. After the movie, Baby Girl declared she wants to be an astronaut, but she wants a pink space suit!! NASA? Are you listening? Can you make this happen?
After the movie we were able to find lots of hands on activities for kids. I was able to capture a few pictures.
Little Dude was able to cool down with Kugel Ball. The Kugel Ball is a giant granite ball inscribed with the constellations. We talked a little about stars and their patterns in the sky and he was able to get his shirt wet a little wet to cool down a bit. They both enjoyed trying to poop like an astronaut and even gave me their best poop faces.
There were lots of things for the kids to do. Little Dude was just a few inches too short for the Space Shuttle Launch Experience. We explored several space related activities while Daddy rode the ride. He said it was fun, but not quite as fun as Mission at Epcot. They both loved pretending to fly a space shuttle. In fact, Baby Girl cried when we let her know her turn was over.
Little Dude really got into pretending to fly a space shuttle. He was pushing all the buttons and making lots of rocket ship noises. He is always very animated. One of his teachers is convinced he is going to be an actor when he grows up.
On our way downstairs we ran into a space shuttle tunnel, the kids were super excited! They took their shoes off and climbed in. It looked like such a cool tunnel.
Contrary to this picture, there were actually lots of kids going through the tunnel; I just happened to catch Baby Girl at a good time. After they climbed in, it was taking forever for them to come out, so I went back to the entrance and the two of them were coming back. Little Dude told me he was scared to go through the transparent part of the tunnel. However, he decided to go for it.
Then they went through the tunnel again and again and again and again. We have to convince them to leave the tunnel. It was not until we took the super cool slide down to the next level (sorry no picture and Baby Girl was too small to slide), did we realize how high the transparent tunnel was off the ground. It was way above 25 feet above the ground. No wonder Little Dude was a little nervous to crawl across the tunnel. It would have freaked me out as well, but they handled it like champs.
Downstairs they had more interactive exhibits for the kids. Baby Girl really liked the Blast off Game. There were displays projected on the floor and they had to move Oxygen and Hydrogen to the center to make energy to create a blast off.
Baby Girl did not quite understand what she was supposed to do with the game, but it did not stop her from having a good time. She played the game for a long time. We had some wonderful cousins join us on our adventure to Kennedy Space Center, so she helped Little Dude and her daughter on a more challenging crane game, while Baby Girl kicked around oxygen and hydrogen. This game also brought on a few whines on how they did not want to stop playing and move onto something else. Not only where they lots of activities to kids, it is not too often they get to experience a real space shuttle!
The Atlantis Space Shuttle went on 33 missions to space! It was inspiring to be in its majestic presence. It was so large, it was hard to get a picture of the entire space shuttle. I also tried to get the kids to pose with space shuttle in the background, but they were not interested. Maybe next time!
Outside there is a recreation of the orange and white rocket booster and external tanks that the Atlantis used during its missions. Tip: Do not sit on the ground to take a picture of the rocket booster in the hot August Florida sun in shorts! Ouch! The ground was hot. It made for a great background for a photo. Baby Girl fell asleep, so she was not included in the first pictures.
Little Dude was my first model for my own clothing business, so he is more than used to posing for pictures. There were lots of people in the background, so I convinced him to stand on a chair (from a outdoor dining table near the Kugel Ball.) It was excited to show off his astronaut shirt made with the Peek-A-Boo astronaut fabric panel. I think the chair idea worked well. I was able to shoot the photo over the people. Baby Girl did not nap long and after we came back outside from doing all the amazing stuff inside, it started raining. It was a quick rain and a nice cool down. I tried to get both of their pictures together under an overhang, so they did not get wet. Baby Girl was not wanting pictures at the moment.
She was less than cooperative. She was overtired, but I really wanted them in their matching shirts in front of the rocket booster. It was Little Dude to the rescue!
I hope this girl realizes how lucky she is to have such an amazing older brother. He has one of the biggest hearts I know. He is always looking out for her and trying to calm her down.
He was able to calm her down. This is the best shot I was able to take with the two of them showing their astronaut shirts in front of the rocker booster. I am pretty happy with the result. He was even able to bring our her smile!
I am happy I stuck with trying to get a photo of the two of them and thankful for Little Dude’s help. Now when Baby Girl sees these photos. She begs to wear her astronaut shirt!! She tells people she wants to be an astronaut when she grows up. Little Dude still wants to be an Animal Doctor. He decided he would like to help animals after his fish died.
We did several things that are not pictured:
- Tried Space Ice Cream and Space Strawberries.
- Bought Souvenirs
- Climbed in the play gym
- Looked at all the rockets on display
- Many Many interactive games
- Learned a ton about Space
Baby girl begged to play with her brother’s new space shuttle. She picked out a little bear in, of course, a pink space suit. My husband picked out a Space X shirt. He really wanted a NASA Visor, however we could not find one in the gift shops. I secretly found one on Amazon on our way back to the hotel. I had shipped to our house and it arrived the day we returned home. You can find the visor here.
Overall, we all had a great time. As a child, honestly I was not much into science. As I have grown, I find it all so fascinating now. It warms my heart that my children were able to have this incredible experience at such a young age and for it to affect them enough that after watching the Journey to Space and experimenting with all the space activities for my daughter to exclaim “Me do it!” She wants to go into space. As we did not have time to do even 1/3 of the activities at Kennedy Space Center, we are already making plans to go back next year. Hopefully we will be to catch a launch next time!
When I told Baby Girl there were not currently any pink space suits for astronauts at the moment she gave me this face:
So NASA? Can you make a pink space suit for future astronauts? You have a few years. 🙂 Although I am not sure I am ready for her launch into space. If she is anything like her Mother, once she puts her mind on things, she will make them happen.
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