Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition Winners to Celebrate at Space Camp/U.S. Space & R

The six RFTS national winners (age 10 to 18) will receive a medal at the Saturn V building and launch their rockets from Homer Hickam Field under an 'October Sky' in 'Rocket City', Huntsville, Alabama.
By: Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition
Get your kids Reaching for the Stars
Get your kids Reaching for the Stars
Aug. 21, 2018 - PRLog -- The national winners of the 12th annual Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition have been invited to celebrate at Space Camp / US Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama. As part of the celebration they get to launch their rockets from Homer Hickam Field underan October Sky. The winners will be presented a Space Shuttle Challenger commemorative medal with certificate signed by Astronaut Jon McBride. Captain McBride piloted the Challenger on her early missions.

The Competition promotes STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) education and is run in memory of Christa McAuliffe / first Teacher-in-Space. Contestants, ages 10 to 18, had to build and launch their own solid-fuel powered rocket at an event held in their area.. Local Competitions were held by schools, scout troops, youth centers, museums, and rocket clubs across the country in this year long event.

Their rockets soared 200 feet into the air to return by parachute. The closest average landing to an on-field target won. The local winner's results were forwarded to RFTS Competition headquarters to be compared to all entries received.

The six national winners; Tristan Lloyd, Shawn Shaffer, Anthony Parsotam, Nyanti Pupoh, Ian Jensen and Vitale Wood qualify to celebrate on October 20th.  Joining the group will be one of last year's winners, Jordyn Presley.

With their families, the winners will continue their celebration; seeing the Pathfinder Space Shuttle, standing in the world famous Rocket Park, climbing the Mars Wall, riding the Astronaut Simulators and visiting the Challenger Astronaut Memorial – honoring the memories of those lost in the conquest of space.

Competition co-director, Kathy Colpas says, "We promise the national winners - memories to last a lifetime and bragging rights for generations to come. Launching their rockets from a memorable location and being honored in front of the Lunar Lander under the historical Saturn V rocket allows us to fulfill our promise."

Tristan Lloyd won their local event while competing at Citrus Springs Elementary in Citrus Springs Florida. Tina Hackey was the Competition host.

Shawn Shaffer won the competition at Wikinson Elementary in Sarasota, Florida. Teachers, Ed Hashey and Mark Harrison were in charge of the launch.

Anthony Parsotam competed at an event at Liberty High School in Kissimmee, Florida. Dr. Samuel Crupi, High School Science Resource Teacher at Osceola County School District hosted the competition.

Nyanti Pupoh took top honors at West Marion Elementary School in Marion, North Carolina. Peggy Hill hosted the competition.

Ian Jensen of Venice High School, Sarasota, Florida scored the closest landings at his school. The event there was run by teacher, John Hearon.

Vitale Wood competed during a STEM Camp at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico. Heather Kangas was in charge of that event.

Jordyn Presley took top honors last year while launching with Bagdad Elementary in Milton, FL. This event was run by teacher Tammy Dillard.

Thanks to financial support from the Community Foundation through EdExploreSRQ students in several Sarasota County schools were given the opportunity to compete. Duke Energy funded the cost for hundreds of students in Citrus Springs, Florida.

Several companies have joined together to provide unforgettable memories for the national winners of the annualReach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition.

«  Space Camp / US Space & Rocket Center provides an unforgettable day for the winners and their families.

«  National Space Society (NSS) extends free membership

«  American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) provides a photo journal of the celebration captured by G. Alan Lowrey.

«  Estes – the world leader in educational rocketry presents each winner with a rocket kit to build and launch.

«  Gammons Charitable Foundation donated launch supplies to many of the host organizations.

«  Clarion Inn - Huntsville is offering discounted lodging.

Without the generosity of these businesses, this winners' celebration would not be possible.

Sponsors receive national recognition and the satisfaction of - Helping Kids Reach for the Stars. More information is available at .

Jack and Kathy Colpas, co-directors of the Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition are retired public school educators with over 50 years of classroom experience. "Our goal is to give kids the educational experience of building and launching a solid-fuel powered rocket. Our purpose is to foster an interest in model rocketry, STEM subjects and aeronautics. Our mission is to keep alive the memory of the first Teacher-in-Space, Christa McAuliffe.

The 13th annual Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition is now underway. It is dedicated to the 'Artist who walked on the Moon', Astronaut Alan Bean. The artwork of Commander Bean is proudly displayed on all of the certificates presented to competitors across the country. Local Competitions can be held at any time before June 30th 2019.

Jack Colpas co-director
Reach for the Stars ~ National Rocket Competition
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