Space Center Houston to reopen July 1

HOUSTON — Explore the wonders of space exploration when Space Center Houston, the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center, reopens with exclusive members-only Welcome Back Days June 28-30 and to the public beginning July 1. 

Following state, local and CDC guidelines, the nonprofit will safely welcome back guests with new exhibits, spacious outdoor experiences and additional health and safety measures at the forefront of its daily operations.

“We have been diligently working to enhance our guest experience while implementing additional health and safety procedures,” said William T. Harris, president and CEO of the science and space exploration learning center. “When guests return to Space Center Houston, we want you to feel safe and inspired through our authentic science learning experiences.

The nonprofit will have new protocols in place including social distancing practices, special hours for vulnerable populations, guests and employees will be asked to wear face coverings, self-scan turnstiles, sanitizing stations, plexiglass shields at ticket counters; and a one-directional experience through its galleries. Guests will book a timed admission ticket for entry to the museum, and daily capacity will be limited. The timed admission tickets on-sale date will be announced, along with a thorough visitor guide, on its website in the coming weeks.

When the center reopens, guests will be among the first to experience its newest permanent exhibit, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket (opened in March), displayed outside the center. Guests can walk around and underneath the first-stage booster spanning more than 156 feet long. It is the only Falcon 9 on public display outside of SpaceX’s headquarters and is the same type of rocket that will launch NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft on May 27 for the Demo-2 mission, marking the first time since 2011 that astronauts have launched from American soil. Guests can also take a tour of the spacious Independence Plaza exhibit, the only place you can walk inside a shuttle replica mounted on top of the historic shuttle carrier aircraft NASA 905.

Following current state guidelines, its theaters will be temporarily closed, however, the center is adding new live shows in open spaces to bring science and space to life for people of all ages.

The center plans to reopen with one of its most popular experiences, the NASA Tram Tour, which will take guests to the Space Vehicle Mockup Facility, where astronauts train for current missions and Rocket Park, where an actual Apollo Saturn V rocket is on display. In addition to a timed admission ticket, guests will reserve a free virtual boarding pass to book a time to experience the NASA Tram Tour.

All Space Center Houston experiences are subject to change while the center continues to monitor state and local health and safety guidelines for reopening. Until Space Center Houston reopens, enjoy a variety of its expanded virtual learning experiences through its new digital resources page at www.spacecenter.org/resources. To stay up to date on reopening procedures and a ticket on-sale date, follow Space Center Houston on its social media pages and sign-up for its newsletter at spacecenter.org.