We got the agenda for the NASA Tweetup

I got an email from the tweetup coordinator today with the agenda for both days. They’ve adjusted the early check in time on Saturday to allow a little later window. I was pleased since I was arriving with very little time to spare to get from Orlando to the Space Coast before the early check in closed. So it won’t be nearly as rushed to get there! I want to find the check in site and have the opportunity to look around KSC before getting totally overwhelmed with the tweetup.

The tweetup officially starts at noon on Oct 31. We will be busy with presentations by NASA team member John Yembrick, Astronaut Nicole Stott, Bill Gerstenmaier, Astronaut Ron Garan, and Stephanie Stillson; demos by/of Robonaut 2 and the Astronauts ACES -Advanced Crew Escape Suit. Then we’ll have the opportunity to tour several parts of KSC. We’ll have the chance to see the International Space Station Center, the Saturn V Center, the Shuttle Landing Facility, the Mate-Demate Device, the Orbiter Processing Facility, the Vehicle Assembly Building, and the Mobile Launcher Platforms. We’ll also have the opportunity to see Discovery on the Launch Pad and watch as the Rotating Service structure is retracted on Sunday evening. And that’s just the first day!

Then on Monday, the tweetup starts at 11:00AM. We’ll get a group picture by the countdown clock, and have several more presentations by Astronaut Janet Voss, Jason Goldman – Vice President of Product Twitter, Lt. Col. Patrick Barrett of the 45th Weather Squadron USAF, and a member of the STS-133 Closeout Crew. In the midst of this, we’ll stop and line the road that the Astronauts will travel to the shuttle on the launch pad to wave and wish them well. If all goes well, the shuttle will launch at 4:40PM Eastern Time. Remember it’ll be 3:40PM Central Time, for those here in town!

If you want to watch the launch, you can watch in online at http://www.nasa.gov/ntv. NASA will broadcast the Oct 31st 2:20PM-3:20PM part of the tweetup on ustream at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nasa-television If your tv provider has the NASA Channel, you can watch the launch and possibly other parts of the tweetup there.

NASA is expecting more than 500,000 people to be in the area for the launch. They have said to expect better delays of up to 3 hours trying to get out after the launch. It makes Talladega race weekend traffic look like nothing. I expect we will all be buzzing from the rush of the launch for a very long time, and will not be willing to leave the area until traffic clears a bit.

Now for some links to follow along with the tweetup. The official Twitter account is @NASATweetup. The twitter list and twitter stream of all the participants is http://twitter.com/nasatweetup/sts-133-launch. The hashtag for the tweetup is #NASATweetup. The link to all of NASA’s social media sites is http://buzzroom.nasa.gov/. The page for Shuttle Mission STS-133 is http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/shuttlemissions/sts133/index.html.

This is SO Exciting! Its like waiting for Christmas morning when you are 6 years old! Only 2 more days, then I’ll be flying out for the tweetup. Its for real!

If you would like to put your name in the hat for the next launch at the end of February, get a Twitter account, follow @NASATweetup, and keep watch out for when they open up the website http://www.nasa.gov/connect/tweetup/index.html for entries to the tweetup for STS-134. Keep an eye out from mid November on. With luck, you’ll be in this same place come February!

Still bubbling over Nasa Launch and Tweetup

Planning continues apace for the tweetup and 111 of the initial 150 invitees have confirmed. The remaining invites to the wait list should be going out tomorrow.

I’m still bubbling over with excitement for this! There’s been pictures and maps posted. Folks are working out rooms and ride shares. Folks are getting to know each other online. Costume ideas are floating, since the first day of the of the tweetup is Halloween. Trying to figure out a costume that will fit in my one bag is interesting, to say the least!

I will have some roomies (hi roomies!) at the hotel. And I need to find out where the grocery stores are so I can stop to get some food supplies will be important. I’m planning on getting some drinks, lunch stuff and snacks so I will have more options than only the concessions.

Then there’s an airshow Oct 30 and 31 at Cocoa Beach. I’m going to have to make some time to gawk on Saturday. My Sunday is already spoken for! 🙂

I’m looking for suggestions for possible gifty things representing Birmingham to take with me for tweetup attendees. Hmmn. What would you think of?

The happy, excited, bubbly feeling is not going away. The only problem is that it is making it very hard to concentrate on day to day activities!

Packing for the trip

I’ve been researching packing for this trip to the KSC. I’m flying down to Florida for it. I fly occasionally, but is isn’t something I do all the time. Normally when I go to events I take a car. Of course, most of the events I attend are within reasonable driving distance to, so that isn’t a problem.

Ive been doing a bit of research, and found a wonderful site on traveling more lightly, One Bag. Or more importantly traveling with just one carry on bag. One of the ways to do that is to use a strict packing list and not take more than that list. Now I’m starting to work on a packing list for this trip. Since I’m there to tweet up, I need to take appropriate electronics and support for twitter tools. 🙂 So netbook, power cord, cell phone and charger. Camera(s) and batteries. Then I’ll need medications with prescription id, and toiletries, as well as contact solution and extra contacts. At the end I’ll worry about clothes.

I’ll need to weigh the resulting luggage. But I won’t come close to my fellow tweet up attendee, Raam Dev. He travels around the world with only one small bag! He will be the first to tell you that this style of travel is not for everyone. I don’t think I would prefer traveling quite that lightly, but he is a someone that enjoys what he’s doing. Talk about traveling lightly!

Decisions, decisions! I’m still floating about this tweetup opportunity. There’s plenty left to do for this, so I’m still working out the details. And then the timing could completely change too. So the details will be up in the air for a while. But it doesn’t matter, its going to happen! Whee!

Stupendous news here!

I’m reeling from it, but I got word on Wednesday that I have been invited to attend the NASA Tweetup for the launch of the next Space Shuttle at Kennedy Space Center in Florida! Imagine me jumping up and down while squeeing like a little girl!!!! OMG!

This is something I never imagined I could win, since it was a drawing for people who tweet and there are a very large number of us. There was a 24 hour period of time to sign up on August 24-25. I later got the figure of over 2700 entries were created on the form for this. Then NASA pulled the entries out of a figurative hat and started notifying 150 winners that they were able to attend if they could, as well as 150 alternates and all the other people that entered.

The bad thing is, DH can’t get into the tweetup. He is welcome to come to Florida and watch from the public viewing area, but he will not have access to the areas I will for 2 days. So this is bittersweet for me. I’ve never seen a shuttle launch, or a space launch of any kind. I had vowed to my self that I would find a way to witness one of the last launches, but I really thought DH would be by my side to watch it, both of us holding the other’s hand and willing that rocket on its way safely out and back.

I have to pay my own way there and find a place to stay contingent on the shuttle keeping its intended launch date. I have a flight, and can re-arrange it if I need to. I have a room booked that is more than I really want to pay, but I need to call em up and adjust the reservation so if the shuttle launches on Nov 1 and I check out I won’t be paying for additional nights at 200 a pop. I still have to get a rental.

You can follow me on twitter at @ageekgirl. The hashtags for this are #NASATweetup and #STS133. NASA’s aggregator page for the tweetup and social media feeds is http://buzzroom.nasa.gov/.

Right now the twitter hashtag #NASATweetup is being used by the folks selected in a an introductory way and is all abuzz with folks who are like me, insanely excited to have this once in a life time opportunity. If you have any suggestions for me about the area, I’d love to see ’em! I have no idea what its like to be there for a launch,and how crazy it gets. So please suggest places or tips for dealing with it all!