Space Shuttle Endeavour Will Appear in Bay Area Skies Friday Morning

Shuttle is on final approach to its new permanent home in Southern California.


The Space Shuttle Endeavour is coming to Bay Area skies Friday.

After weather delayed Endeavour’s departure from Florida for two days, NASA gave the go-ahead for a Wednesday takeoff at dawn, the first leg of the highly anticipated farewell tour that has crowds waiting for a glimpse from Mississippi to Houston to California. 

And why not? It’s a sight that will be hard to forget: the last space shuttle, securely piggybacked onto a modified Boeing 747 jet, flying low over the Golden Gate Bridge, the Bay Area and the state Capitol building, at 1,500 feet. 

“The five-story space shuttle will be hard to miss from the observatory deck at Chabot,” mused Melissa Rosengard, who announced that the Chabot Space & Science Museum in the Oakland Hills is throwing a pajamas-optional flyover party, beginning at 8 a.m. Friday.

Vehicle reservations to NASA Ames’ free flyover party at Moffett Field were already booked up by Tuesday. You can still walk in via VTA Bus route 51 and VTA light rail.

In Houston, home of the Johnson Space Center, there was a flyover and a chance to see the shuttle overnighted at Ellington Field. In all these places that were integral to the space program, Moffett Field included, the last tour of the Endeavour prompts emotion.

Friday morning, when Northern California’s turn comes, Endeavour is scheduled to take off from Edwards Air Force Base, head up to Sacramento, then fly over the East Bay about 8:30 a.m.

From there, it’s on to San Francisco, then Moffett Field and NASA Ames, where so much of the important space shuttle work was performed.

Then, it’s on to L.A., where 10:30 a.m. flyovers are planned—where else?—over Disneyland, among several locations.

Endeavour, which made 25 missions, spent 299 days in orbit and orbited the Earth 4,671 times will end its career as an earth-bound exhibit in the California Science Center in Los Angeles’ Exposition Park, the latest of the space shuttles to transition to civilian life, on museum duty

NASA is encouraging people to report Endeavour sightings using the hashtags #spottheshuttle and #OV105, Endeavour's orbiter vehicle designation.

If you get good pictures of the Space Shuttle Endeavour Friday morning, please share them with other Benicia Patch readers.

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If there’s something in this article you think should be corrected, or if something else is amiss, call editor JB Davis at 707-628-0051 or email him at benicia@patch.com.

Joe Feltcher September 21, 2012 at 05:36 PM
I think its great that California is getting the Endeavour. D.C. got the Discovery, N.Y. got the Enterprise, Florida got the Atlantis and New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma got the Columbia.
JB Davis September 21, 2012 at 07:52 PM
I saw the plane and the shuttle this morning, but it took a turn to the south before I could get a picture.


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