The Hidden Treasures of Ethiopia will open in Times Square on June 24. The icon of paleoanthropology— the famous 3.2 million-year-old hominid known as Lucy — will be on display through Oct. 25, 2009.
“Recent scientific research conducted on Lucy illustrates that she still has stories to tell,” said Dirk Van Tuerenhout, curator of anthropology at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. “Even though she lived more than 3 million years ago, Lucy continues to give us clues about what it means to be a human.”
With 40 percent of her skeleton intact, Lucy remains the oldest and most complete adult human ancestor retrieved from African soil. Other important paleoanthropological discoveries will also be represented including an overview of known fossils discovered in Africa, Asia and Europe which completes the current account of human evolution as it is known to scientists today, setting the stage for a more in-depth presentation of the importance of Ethiopia’s fossil record.
Lucy’s Legacy: The Hidden Treasures of Ethiopia opens at Discovery Times Square Exposition™, a new state-of-the-art exhibition in the former printing presses building of The New York Times at 226 West 44th Street.
On July 20, 2009, as America celebrates the 40th anniversary of the moon landing, the city of Houston will lead the festivities. Astronaut Neil Armstrong's first word from the moon in 1969 was "Houston." He said, "Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed."
Houston is home to Johnson Space Center and Mission Control.
The official space museum in Houston is one of only a few places in the world where visitors can see a Saturn V rocket, an Apollo capsule that was actually flown (Apollo 17), see and touch rocks brought back from the moon by Apollo astronauts and sit in the gallery of Mission Control where the famous words of the Apollo 11 touchdown were first heard. In addition, Space Center Houston offers Level 9 tours, behind-the-scenes tours that let visitors glimpse into the lives of astronauts.
Facing Mars is a U.S. premiere that features interactive stations that encourage visitors to "walk on Mars," test and launch rockets, "fly over" the Martian landscape and consider the implications humans face in their quest to reach the Red Planet. This innovative exhibit focuses on the real challenges of sending human explorers to Mars. With more than 28 experiences, Facing Mars combines a range of hands-on experiences with compelling artifacts, such as a rare Mars meteorite from West Africa and stunning imagery to engage participants in the physical, psychological and scientific challenges involved in journeying to Mars.
Visitors become a rocket scientist for the day and explore the challenges of aerodynamic stability. They experience what it is like to "walk on Mars" at a station that subtracts 60 percent of their weight to simulate Martian gravity. Visitors also explore some of the potential pyschological and emotional stresses that astronauts may face on their journey, examining how contagious emotions can be and discovering where their own personal space threshold lies. The museum will also have an actual size model of the Mars Exploration Rover on loan from NASA on display throughout the summer.