The 2020 Las Cruces Space Festival launches in under two months! We have a full week of educational and fun space-themed activities that are free and open to all ages. We are focusing our events on STEM outreach and inspiring youth of all ages to reach for the stars!
The Festival launches with two days of workshops at Mesa and Vista Middle Schools hosted by NASA. The classroom workshops will focus on “mixed messages” and be attended by STEM students from 6th-8th grade.
After the success of our 2019 art exhibit ‘Our Place In Space’, we will be bringing a new space-themed show to downtown Las Cruces called ‘Dawn of Discovery’. The pop-up art exhibit will be held at the Bank of the West building on Main/ Church St and will be open Monday- Friday evening from 5-8pm and Saturday from 10am- 5pm. Further details can be found on our call for artists blog.
We will be running seven missions at the Challenger Learning Center of Las Cruces from March 30th- April 3rd 6-8pm, and two on Saturday April 4th, at 1pm and 5pm. These simulated missions to Mars are a great way to strengthen knowledge in STEM fields and space exploration and are fun for all ages! Advanced registration is required and sign ups will open later this month.
Artists Tim Fitzpatrick and Jeff Erwin will be returning to the Festival in 2020 to premiere their movie ‘We Choose To Go To The Moon’ on Monday March 30th at 7pm at the Rio Grande Theater. This art film was captured at Kilbourne Hole in 2019 on the 50th anniversary of NASA using the volcanic maar ahead of the Apollo programs successful missions to the Moon. ‘We Choose To Go To The Moon’ was filmed by local production company NMCO Media and in partnership with Southwest Expeditions and Shine. The movie will be followed by a Q&A with the artists.
The Big Space Quiz will be held on Tuesday, March 31st and will feature an array of questions on space past, present and future. Awards will be given to the best team name and the overall winners of the contest. Venue details will be announced in the next few weeks.
The Rio Grande Theater will be showing Sci-Fi movies from April 1st- 3rd at 7pm. The line-up includes Gravity, Interstellar and October Sky. All movies are free to attend and concessions are offered at the venue.
The Museum of Nature and Science will be offering a free space-themed Pre-k class at 9am on Thursday, April 3rd. Preschool children and their parent or caregiver are invited to investigate nature and science through hands-on explorations, stories, and arts and crafts. Recommended for ages 2 – 5.
‘Making Contact’, a space education and career expo, will be held at the Sierra Middle School on Thursday, April 2nd from 5.30-7.30pm. Las Cruces is home to an abundance of opportunities for well-paid, meaningful careers in the aerospace and commercial space industries. Learn more and meet employers at this special event featuring national speakers, scholarship information, high school and college student internship opportunities, and high-tech interactive exhibits from NASA, Jacobs Technology, Spaceport America, Virgin Galactic and many more!
New Mexico State University (NMSU) Astronomy Department will be opening its doors to the public on Friday, April 3rd. With guest lectures from faculty and alumni working in space research, followed by guided observing through telescopes, this night promises to be educational and inspiring!
Our ‘Making Space For Everyone’ event on the Plaza de Las Cruces will be held from 10-2 on Saturday, April 4th. This event includes hands-on activities and interactive booths from our partners at NASA, Jacobs Technology, Spaceport America, Virgin Galactic, New Mexico Space History Museum and many more! The event will close with a ‘spacewalk’ down Main Street with prizes for best space-themed costumes in different age categories and a new pet category too!
NMSU hosts the NASA ROADS on Mars Student contest on Saturday, April 4th. The ROADS on Mars challenge gives teams of students grades 3–12 a chance to tackle a mission to Mars, following in the path of the next rover — Mars 2020. Just like the next rover, teams will face challenges including engineering and programming, analysis of biological signatures and geologic features, not to mention flying to Mars and successfully landing. Top teams from across the country will win a trip to Kennedy Space Center for the launch of Mars 2020!
Participants in the 2020 Las Cruces Space Festival will have an opportunity to sign up to win a VIP tour of Virgin Galactic’s Gateway to Space building at Spaceport America. We will announce the winner of the contest at the end of the Festival week.
The Las Cruces Space Festival mission is ‘Making Space for Everyone’. The Festival is free to participate in, and open to all, with the cost of activities, presentations, displays, and exhibits all covered by sponsors. We work with many partner organizations across the community – ranging from the public schools, local universities and colleges, space industry, arts, and cultural groups, and many others – to provide an event for people of all ages and interests.
If you or your company are interested in sponsoring the 2020 Las Cruces Space Festival, our Executive Team would be happy to meet with you to discuss our sponsorship packages.