Did you see the CBS Steve Hartman "On the Road" segment on the Presidio, TX, rocket club team that competed Sunday at Team America Rocket Challenge (TARC) in Plains, VA last Saturday? It's an inspiring story that gives a fuller meaning to "reaching for the stars."
Saturday was a perfect day for rocket launching by the the young and hopeful rocketeers who gathered in Plains, VA, to compete in the 10th annual Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC) on Saturday, May 12. One hundred winning teams of student rocketeers, winners in local challenges, arrived excited to be part of the national competition and in the running for more than $60,000 in scholarship awards. Rocketry is no longer a male-only sport. Young women are also part of the scene with some all-girl teams and one team announced as having only one boy.
The National Association of Rocketry, an organization more than 50 years old, many of whose members began their long-time commitments to model rocketry as youngsters themselves, is the prime sponsor and organizer. Many corporations from the aerospace industry support the event and are on-hand with educational and entertaining exhibitions.
The crowd that gathered—families, rocket enthusiasts, aerospace professionals, educators and those who aspire to a career in the related sciences as well as the curious, like me—was spirited and friendly, making a day on these fields a happy place to be. There were educational and entertaining exhibits, as well as the exciting rocket launching. Now, tell me where else could you make friends with a robot or try on an F-16 injection seat for size—all things that capture imaginations.
If you did not make it to TARC this year, look for it next year, and bring with you a youngster who has dreams of the stars.