Boeing to be Title Sponsor of New Astronaut Hall of Fame

571px-Spaceship_one2The Boeing Company is the title sponsor of the upcoming Heroes & Legends, a renewed, interactive attraction featuring the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, announced Therrin Protze, chief operating officer of the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex during an official ceremony on Friday.  It will be the first time in more than 50 years that the complex has entered into an agreement with a corporate sponsor. Protze said that Boeing “as a leader in the human exploration of space” will bring “a rich history and exciting future” to the new attraction. He added that the two parts of the agreement are so passionate to “share the stories of the heroic men and women who have sacrificed so much and inspired so many.” 

John Elbon, general manager of Boeing Space Exploration called “Florida’s Space Coast”  “the hallowed ground of all human launches from American soil.” And reminded that  there were so many firsts at the complex. He added that in honor of Boeing’s 100th anniversary it’s appropriate that the visitor complex and NASA to work together and “share the exciting journey ahead of human spaceflight with guests from around the world.”

During the official ceremony, a ten-foot long replica of an X-15 rocket plane was raised to the top of the building and will remain there as a visual icon representing Boeing’s contributions to the past of human spaceflight. The X-15 flew for nearly a decade achieving hypersonic speeds and explored the upper edge of the Earth’s atmosphere and its technology contributed to the development of the Apollo, Gemini, Mercury, and Space Shuttle Programs.

As the new quarters for the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, Heroes and Legends will be set in the complex’s famous rocket garden. New technology, interactive elements and exhibits will be used to spotlight heroes of space.  The Boeing-sponsored exhibit will offer its guests everything from the spoons the astronauts ate with to holograms that will make visitors feel like the astronauts are talking to them.

Heroes and Legends is scheduled to open at the Brevard County attraction on November 11.