BY JEN VAUGHN – A brief apology for posting this but the Star Trek nerd in me could NOT help myself. Many a weekend was spent in my youth attending the Star Trek conventions with my mom (who was in full Next Gen costume) at the Plaza hotel in Las Vegas, the highlight of course was meeting Brent Spiner and Michael Dorn (Lieutenant Commanders Data and Worf).
We’re sending Star Trek’s Captain Picard and Captain Kirk to the edge of space for the first time ever on a high-altitude balloon. The reason: Picard and Kirk were the greatest starship captains to ever exist, only they have never been to space in reality. So we’re sending their action figures to space in the most elaborate amateur high-altitude balloon mission in history as a way to symbolically send the characters themselves. And we’re sending them atop of their respective starships; Picard will fly with Riker and Data aboard a model of the USS Enterprise-D, and Kirk will fly aboard the Enterprise NCC-1701. All strapped to the biggest high-altitude balloon available for the amateur market (it will expand to 40 feet in diameter before it bursts).
Taking place on May 5th in Illinois the set up includes the “2 starship captains, 6 action figures, 2 starships, 10 cameras (including 3D), and a launch team of over a dozen.” The Discovery Channel is also sending a film crew so you can check it out later on some high-quality footage. The Kickstarter project has actually reached its goal but they offer buttons that have FLOWN TO SPACE (see below) as one of the rewards and there are still 7 hours and counting to go. You can check out an enthusiastic project manager, Kugler, explain it all on their Kickstarter page. MAKE IT SO, NUMBER ONE.
UPDATE: Chris Pine’s Kirk is on the logo but Shatner is the Kirk to go into space! See photo:
Jen Vaughn is a creation of the Holodeck, era: Renaissance.