Astronauts Ball coming to Bangor learning center

Posted June 14, 2010, at 7:06 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — Retired astronaut Frederick Hauck will be the featured guest at the third annual Astronauts Ball from 6 to 11 p.m. Friday, June 18, at the Challenger Learning Center of Maine.

The event is a primary fundraiser for the Challenger Learning Center, housed in the former Dow Air Force Base movie theater on Venture Way. The center takes students from all over Maine on 150 simulated space missions each school year.

In addition to introducing students to the wonders of space travel, the center helps entice them into careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. It’s one of 50 such centers worldwide that came about after the Challenger shuttle disaster in 1986.

In addition to Hauck, the guest speaker for the event will be state Sen. Elizabeth Schneider of Orono, who has advocated for STEM — which stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics — education. John Bapst Memorial High School student John Deschaine, who is featured as a communications officer flying a CLC space mission on the DVD “Inspiring. Exploring. Learning. It’s Our Mission,” also will attend.

The Astronauts Ball will feature donated prizes from a variety of local businesses. The grand door prize is a trip to Orlando, Fla. There also will be an alien 50-50 raffle, with the holder of the winning alien taking home a cash prize.

Advance reservations are required for the Astronauts Ball. Admission is $75 a person, $500 for a table of eight. To make a reservation call 990-2900.

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