The Science of...Aliens in the News

Recently, the topic of extraterrestrial life has made headlines. Cosmologist Stephen Hawking released a statement last week discussing alien life and how humanity should avoid contact. On the other hand, NASA is considering new missions to search for evidence of extraterrestrial life. The plan includes exploring the moons of Jupiter and Saturn. The Museum's newest exhibition The Science of...Aliens takes a look at what life could exist in the Universe and what the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) is doing. Be sure to visit the exhibition and decide how you feel on these topics! The Science of...Aliens is now showing for a limited time. See it before it's too late!

For more information on Stephen Hawking's article, please visit:
For more information on NASA's new plan, please visit:
For more information on The Science of...Aliens, please visit:

Special Offers for SDASM Members

SDASM Members can enjoy the following special offers and invitations for the month of May:

Limited Time Member Discount for The Science of...Aliens
For the entire month of May, Museum members will receive a special discount that is out of this world for our new exhibition The Science of...Aliens:
$5 Adult members for Aliens
$4 Youth members for Aliens
Don't miss it!

Members Save $20 on Failure is Not an Option Lecture with Gene Kranz
Invest in your success as feature speaker, Gene Kranz - former NASA Flight Control Director and Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient - shares how Failure is Not an Option. SAIC Defense Solutions President, Deborah Alderson, will share the secrets of one of the highest level technical achievement organizations in the entire country - its people! This spectacular event is the first in a three day leadership event organized by PMI® San Diego featuring business leaders and pioneers in project management. Don't miss this great opportunity to network with and expand your expertise through others' real world experiences. General Reception begins at 6 pm on May 12th. To purchase tickets, please visit and use code PMISDMEM01S for discount.

Travel to Italy with SDASM
Join the San Diego Air & Space Museum on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Tuscany! Visit the homeland of da Vinci and experience the rich Tuscan culture from the past to the present when you "take flight" with us for this exciting and enlightening vacation. Our program is located in the heart of Tuscany, Italy, an incredible place for a vacation, with perfectly preserved hill towns, fabulous art, the most beautiful countryside imaginable, culturally rich cities, top quality restaurants and food. The spirits of da Vinci, Dante, Boccaccio and Michelangelo are flagrant on virtually any street, and the days of the Renaissance seem close at hand. Please reserve early to avoid missing out on this wonderful experience! Click here to download the informational PDF.

10% Discount at our new Flight Path Café
The Museum's new café is now open on our beautiful back patio overlooking the San Diego city skyline. Present your member card at time of purchase and receive 10% off! To view the menu, please visit

Kids Free for Space Day

This Saturday the Museum will host our 7th Annual Space Day celebration! Museum Members and kids 17 and under, with a paid adult admission, receive free admission to the event.

As a Space Day special guest, local astronaut Jim Newman, whose ambitious spacewalks from the space shuttle helped repair the Hubble Space Telescope, is planning to join us and share stories of his dynamic space career.

Space Day will also feature hands-on activities such as driving a Mars Rover, building and flying paper rockets, looking through a telescope, exploring a lunar landscape diorama and much more. Additionally, national and local space experts will also be in attendance. Invited presenters include: NASA, Lockheed Martin, JPL, San Diego Space Society, SETI, San Diego Astronomy Association, Virgin Galactic, UCSD EarthKAM, The Planetary Society, InterPlanetary Ventures, The Astronaut Teacher Alliance, Team Synergy Moon and many others.

2010 Space Day Information:
Location - San Diego Air & Space Museum's Pavilion of Flight
Date - Saturday, May 8th, 2010
Time - 10:00am to 2:00pm
Admission - Up to four kids 17 and under free with a paid adult admission
(does not include special exhibitions)

As an extra bonus, the Museum's Space Galleries are open for viewing throughout the event, including a flown Apollo spacecraft, moon rocks, and space suits!

75th Anniversary of Museum's Building

The Museum is pleased to announce the upcoming publication of Wheels to Wings: San Diego's Ford Building. This limited edition book is set to be released for the 75th anniversary celebration of the historic Ford Building. The book narrates the history of the last of five Ford Exposition structures built in the 1930s. Beginning with Henry Ford's interest in industrial exhibitions and ending with the building's contemporary status as home to the San Diego Air & Space Museum, the book features numerous detailed photos illustrating the history from its opening to the present. Wheels to Wings presents the fascinating history in a simple, well articulated manner that all can enjoy.

The San Diego Ford Building was built for the California Pacific International Exposition held in Balboa Park from 1935-1936. As a symbol of modernism, Henry Ford and his design team wanted the exhibit hall to stand out and be a testimony to technology and progress. On May 29, 1935, the dazzling white "Streamlined Moderne" Ford building greeted fair-goers with its unique, circular design. After the Fair closed in 1936, the building was used in a variety of roles such as a classroom, bomb shelter and storage facility. Once a highlight of Balboa Park, the Ford Building became a "White Elephant" slated for destruction. Saved from destruction by concerned citizens, the building today houses the San Diego Air & Space Museum.

For more information on the fascinating history of the Ford Building be sure to pre-order Wheels to Wings today!

27th Annual Charity Golf Tournament & Luau Dinner

Golf Tournament

27th Annual Charity Golf Tournament & Alien Luau to Benefit the Kids

Join the San Diego Air & Space Museum and the San Diego International Airport as we celebrate our 27th Annual Charity Golf Tournament.

Tournament Day - Wednesday, August 11, 2010
At the Coronado Municipal Golf Course
Event Schedule


Fee includes:


Your participation as a player and contributor will help us provide quality educational experiences to students in the San Diego region through scholarships, exhibits, classes and outreach.

Click here to Register for this event online.

Golf Tournament

Unable to play in the golf tournament? Not interested in golf?

Join us for our Alien Luau to Benefit the Kids! - Saturday August 14th.

Spend a fun evening at the San Diego Air & Space Museum's Alien Luau. Explore our newest exhibition, The Science of...Aliens, bid on great silent and live auction items, enjoy delicious food and much more! All proceeds benefit the Museum's educational programs. Prizes will be awarded to the best "alien" costume. The evening is sure to be out of this world!

Click here to Register for this event online.

SDASM Digitizes World-Class Photo Collection

The staff of the Museum's Library and Archives, with assistance from the Balboa Park Online Collaborative, have stepped up their comprehensive program of digitization in order to preserve and make more accessible the moving and still image collection. This process has been made possible, in large part, by a generous grant from the Benbough Foundation. If you are not aware, the SDASM Library and Archives houses on of the largest and most unique collections of Air and Space moving and still image collections in the World. The collection includes images of approximately 95% of aircraft that were ever conceived! Other highlights include the complete history of PSA Airlines, a large AVG photo collection, rare Lindbergh Photos, original Spirit of St. Louis flight film and a video history of Convair. In total, the collection contains over one million photos, negatives, slides and transparencies, in addition to thousands of films and videos. To increase visibility of the photograph collection, the Museum is listing its digital images on Flickr Commons at

Summer Camps Are Filling Up Fast

The Museum offers a variety of half-day, week-long programs, which teach air and space history and science through hands-on activities such as designing and building model airplanes, launching model rockets, and flying simulators.
Please hurry because these summer camps are filling up fast!

Below are the camps offered for the 2010 Aerosummer Camp schedule. To begin the registration process, click here.

First Flight
Grades 1-2
$100 (Members $80)
July 12-16 Balboa Park, 1:00-4:00
Students make a timeline, build and launch paper rockets, and participate in other fun activities that introduce them to aviation and space flight.

Up, Up, and Away
Grades 1-2
$100 (Members $80)
August 16-20 Balboa Park, 9:00-12:00
Another fun option for our younger students! This program explores flight through making and flying balloons, kites, gliders, rockets, and more.

Silent Flight
Grades 3-4
$100 (Members $80)
July 26-30 Balboa Park, 9:00-12:00
Students try out different kite designs, build hot air balloons, and experiment with gliders as they investigate ways of traveling on the wind.

Destination Mars
Grades 3-4
$100 (Members $80)
June 28 - July 2 Balboa Park, 9:00-12:00
Come explore Mars with us! Learn the history of our fascination with the Red Planet, build a Martian colony and a Martian lander, search for life, and build and launch an aquarocket.

Flights of Fancy *Special One-Day Family Camp*
Grades 4-Adult
July 31, North County, 9:00-1:00
This fun one-day camp is now for kids AND adults! Don't just drop off your child - with this camp you get to join the fun. Spend Saturday together flying radio-controlled model aircraft and driving radio-controlled cars with members of the Miramar RC Flyers. Campers of all ages will also build and fly a rubber powered model airplane. Program cost includes tuition for 1 child and 1 adult, and includes lunch - a terrific value!

Aviation Simulations *Two Sessions*
Grades 5-12
$100 (Members $80)
July 19-23 Balboa Park, 9:00-12:00 Sold Out. Please Call to be Added to the Waiting List
August 23-27 Balboa Park, 1:00-4:00
Finally, computer games used for education! Students will learn the basics of flight, navigation, and instrumentation while testing their skills on computer simulators. Additional simulators will be used throughout the week along with instruction by actual pilots. Great for the future aviator.

Extreme Rocketry
Grades 5-12
$100 (Members $80)
August 2-6 Balboa Park, 9:00-12:00
An exciting advanced rocketry project for students who are familiar with rocketry or have experience in model building. Students construct individual rockets and work in teams to build a multi-stage rocket. Rocket launches subject to FAA approval.

Wright Flyer to Right Now
Grades 5-12
$100 (Members $80)
August 9-13 Balboa Park, 9:00-12:00
Learn the history of aviation from da Vinci to space flight using our simulators! Students will engage in daily hands-on activities and end each day flying historical planes on our simulators. This is a great camp for the future pilot and a great way to learn history in a fun way.

To begin the registration process, click here.

Scholarships are available! For details on scholarship applications, please call the Education Department at (619) 234-8291 x 119 (8:00 am - 2:00 pm)

The San Diego Air & Space Museum welcomes children with disabilities and other special needs; working with Kids Included Together we ensure that all children have access to our programs. Please contact us so we can make accommodations to allow your child's successful participation.

Curatorial News

P-40 Flying Tiger Leaving Museum
After a long term loan of nearly twenty years, FedEx, owner of the Museum's P-40 Flying Tiger aircraft, is removing the WWII era fighter and placing it initially with another museum. It will be exhibited on a short term basis up and down the west coast over the next several years at several institutions. Because the Flying Tigers exhibit is so popular with our visitors, we will do our best to replace the P-40 in the future. Be sure to visit the Flying Tiger before it leaves!

New Corsair Model Joins Collection
The Museum recently acquired an exciting new model of a F4U Corsair. The magnificently hand crafted 1/16th scale model F4U Corsair was fabricated from roof flashing material purchased at a hardware store. Each rib, longeron, and bulkhead is in place, visible on the cutaway side. Look very closely and you will notice fuel and hydraulic line, throttle and propeller cables, engine wires and even a sliding canopy. Ailerons, flaps, elevators and rudders are operational, driven by miniature chains exactly as the original, and the landing gear actually retracts. Built by Dr. Young C. Park, a retired dentist from Hawaii, the incredible detail of this model, and two others that Park has built, has amazed the modeling world. More than 6000 hours and five years time were dedicated to creating his masterpiece. The Corsair has been loaned to the San Diego Air & Space Museum by the Craftsmanship Museum of Vista, CA. For an image and more information:

Robinson R44 Helicopter Now on Display
The R44 Astro was designed during the late 1980s by Frank Robinson (member International Aerospace Hall of Fame, 2009) and his team of engineers. FAA certification followed in late 1992 with production beginning immediately thereafter. Since its introduction the R44 Astro, and its successors the Raven and Raven II, the Robinson four-seater has become the industry's best selling helicopter in its class. This particular Robinson was donated to the museum by Larry Bay in 2007 and restored to its present condition at our Gillespie Field annex by a team of dedicated volunteers.

Member Spotlight

The Museum greatly appreciates all of you who have decided to support our mission by becoming members. To show just a little of our huge amount of appreciation, in each newsletter, we will highlight one of our amazing members. Below is our first member spotlight on Jesse Clark.

Museum Member: Jesse Clark

Tell us a little about yourself?
I have been San Diegan for the past 10 years. I am a 1992 graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. I previously worked at NASA Johnson Space Center, Honeywell Commercial and Corporate aircraft divisions in Arizona, then Cubic Transportation Systems in San Diego. I have been a member of the Planetary Society for over 10 years, a member of the local Mars Society chapter since 2003 and I founded the San Diego Space Society, the local chapter of the National Space Society, in 2008. I am also a current NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador. I love talking to people about space exploration and working on projects that are space related.

How long have you been a member?
2-3 years, although I've been visiting the museum since before I moved to San Diego.

Why are you interested in aviation and/or space?
I've been interested in aviation AND space for as long as I can remember. It started after my grandfather took me for a ride in his airplane for my 3rd birthday. I couldn't get enough when I was growing up. I read as much as I could get my hands on about astronomy and space exploration. I started flying lessons when I was just 16 years old. My avid interest in aviation and space continue today in almost everything that I do.

Why did you become a member of the Museum?
Being the principle location for aviation and space in San Diego, it was natural for me to frequent the museum and become a member. With the new exhibits that rotate in and out of the museum, there is always something new to see. I continue to look at ways I can be more involved.

What is your favorite exhibit or artifact in the Museum and why?
I particularly love the Space section of the museum. Space history has a particular fascination for me. I once had the opportunity to see the space hardware collection below the museum. I was like a kid in a candy store.

Interested in sharing your interest in the Museum and why you became a member? E-mail the Museum.