The U.S. Air Force Space And Missile History Center Is Open To
The most recent addition to the central Florida coast's
spaceflight heritage opened to the public late last week at just
outside the south gate of Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
Located in what was the auditorium of the former Space Florida
building adjacent to Gate 1 at the base is the U.S. Air Force Space
and Missile History Center. The museum's just-launched website says
the museum is "dedicated to assisting the Air Force's 45th Space
Wing in preserving the history and telling the story of launch
operations from Cape Canaveral."
The museum's board of directors says the new facility is
intended to serve a broader audience than the museum it operates at
Launch Complex 26, which was the launch pad for the United State's
first orbiting satellite "Explorer 1". That museum is on the secure
side of the Air Force Base gate, and is accessible only by KSC bus
tour or through a monthly tour offered by the Air Force which
requires reservations. "It's a foothold outside the gate," Jim
Banke, secretary of the museum board told Florida Today. "It's a
way to tell the story of the cape.
This new museum is open to the public with no admission charge
Tuesday through Sunday. The main exhibit of the museum takes
visitors through the history of each launch pad at Cape Canaveral
Air Force Station, which was originally the nation's Joint Long
Range Proving Ground when it was opened in 1949. "It has the
potential to be a major tourist attraction," Banke said.