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Men and women all over the world work together to achieve feats in science, technology, engineering and math. The contributions of scientists and engineers in STEM professions are the inspiration for a unique Heritage Family Day Saturday, Aug. 2, at the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va. “We Share STEM! Connecting Across Cultures: Heritage Family Day and Helicopter Display” will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
As a special highlight of the day, the theme of cross-cultural collaboration will be showcased through an outdoor display of seven helicopters representing a variety of organizations, including a Bell 429 Global Ranger from Fairfax County Police and a WBAL-TV A-Star AS350B.
Scientists and inventors from more than 10 countries were involved in the quest for vertical flight, and many travelled across countries to collaborate. Visitors can learn about one such innovator, gyroplane inventor Juan de la Cierva, at aeronautics curator Roger Connor’s “Ask an Expert” talk. Visitors will also have the chance to get up close and personal with the helicopters on display and the people who fly them.
The family day will also feature hands-on learning and activities for all ages. Visitors can:
- Talk to NASA astronaut Col. Patrick Forrester (Ret. U.S. Army)
- Interact with Latino professionals participating in the “¡Descubra! Meet the Science Expert” series, in collaboration with the Smithsonian Latino Center
- Chat with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, National Capital Region
- Discover the science behind rocket flight, see a model rocket showcase and Mars rover models with the Federation of Galaxy Explorers and Tripoli Central Virginia Model Rocketry
- Enjoy hands-on activities with VirginiaFIRST Robotics
- Explore remote control aircraft and simulators with the Virginia Aerospace Design Team Hoos Flying
- Build and decorate their own sled kite or rocket craft
For a full schedule of activities, visit the museum’s website. This Heritage Family Day program is made possible through the support of Northrop Grumman Corporation.
The National Air and Space Museum is on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., at Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W. The museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is located in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport. Both facilities are open daily from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25). Admission is free, but there is a $15 fee for parking at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
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