|Warning: It gets really nerdy past this point! LOL|
As many of y'all know, I am a HUGE Star Trek fan. There are two traveling exhibits that feature costumes, props, models, and set pieces that travel around the country and the world. The Louisville Science Center hosted part of Star Trek: The Exhibition, and it was the closest that it's ever come to me.
I was determined to go. Jackie said she didn't want to go, but Mom said she would love to tag along. (I think she's a bigger Star Trek fan than she would care to admit.) With the exhibit closing in just a few days, we made an overnight trip to Louisville. I'd planned on making the trip sometime during the semester, but as usual, school kept me busy.
So last Wednesday, Mom and I hit the road to Louisville, which is a straight shot up I-65. We stopped in Cullman to grab a bite to eat. We were making good time... until we hit Nashville at rush hour. But it wasn't too bad, and we were in Kentucky in no time.
|We traveled up I-65 at warp speed!|
|The space pod shower|
While I was talking to Jackie on Skype that night (because I'd forgotten to bring a wall charger for my phone), I realized that I'd forgotten to bring my camera! I was so mad at myself, but then I read on the exhibit's website that photos were prohibited...except for the ones you can pay for. I decided that I would charge up my phone in the car the next morning (just in case I could sneak in a couple of photos while we there there).
The next morning, we went to the JC Penney Outlet store that was beside the hotel. They had a ton of stuff, and all of the prices were really reasonable. We bought a bunch of stuff for only $70. It was a steal! (The closest one here is in Decatur. Mom wants to make a trip to that one someday.)
From there, we set off to the Louisville Science Center. They had a huge banner of the Enterprise on back of the building, which overlooked the parking lot and the Ohio River. There was also a large poster beside the parking lot entrance that said, "My other ride is a Constitution-class Starship." Of course I had my picture taken with it.
When we walked into the science center, I bought our tickets and we walked up to the staffer at the entrance to the exhibit. "You are not allowed to use cameras or cell phone cameras in the exhibit," he said. Bummer.
The first two costumes were from the 2009 Star Trek movie. One was of a Vulcan Science Academy member and the other was from a Romulan bad guy.
Next up was a display of the Borg Sphere ship from First Contact. The layers of detail on the model was incredible, and it was stuff that I'd never noticed while watching the movie. There was also one of the prosthetics of a Borg drone.
The next costume was Whoopi Goldberg's from when she played Guinan on The Next Generation. They even had her big, flat hat! There was also a display case of alien weapons, including Romulan rifles, Bajoran phasers, Cardassian disruptors, Andorian blasters, even a phaser rifle from The Original Series. There was also a Klingon uniform from TOS, with a forehead piece from a TNG-era Klingon.
Next was Major Kira's famous crimson uniform from Deep Space 9. Mom couldn't get over how small the costume was. "She sure was a tiny little thing," she said. Kai Opaka's costume was also on display there. Mom really enjoyed seeing the detail in all the different fabrics and jewelry.
While we were looking at the Kai's robes, one of the exhibit's employees walked up and started talking to us. Then he asked me if I wanted to sit in Captain Kirk's chair and have my picture taken. Of course I said YES!!! Because the science center didn't have room for the replica of the Enterprise's bridge, they used a green screen to put the bridge background in the photos. He took a couple of me by myself and one with me and Mom. He said, "You can use this as your Christmas card!" It was then that I realized that he must have thought that I was a stereotypical nerd living in my Mom's basement!! I didn't say anything to him though... and I'm still thinking about using it as our Christmas card. I don't think Jackie would mind. Maybe it could say, "Hope Santa beams down everything you want for Christmas!" Just kidding.
|Me and Mom on the "bridge"|
|Standing on the "bridge"|
|Beam me up!!|
When he finished taking my picture, he told me that I could take my own pictures throughout the exhibit!
That was all I needed to hear! I started snapping pictures, but tried not to be too obvious. In the next room, there were several costumes from Voyager, including Seven of Nine's brown catsuit, one of Neelix's suits, and one of Kes's outfits. Data's costume from First Contact was also there, complete with a prosthetic of his positronic brain! It was so neat to be standing just inches away from all of these things that I'd watched over and over and over again on television. I was a little surprised to see the difference in how they looked up close from how the looked on TV. Seven's uniform looked very faded, as did Neelix's, but I'm sure under the studio lights they looked very different. Mom really liked Neelix's jacket's flaps that held it closed. She said she wouldn't mind having a jacket like his!
|Seven of Nine|
|Mom with Seven's catsuit|
Next was a hallway that looked like the set from TNG. One side had computer panels, while the other was a mockup of Captain Picard's quarters, but most of the furniture was not from the show. Inside the display was Data's uniform from the show and one of his paintings, Picard's ready room chair and his desk from the Enterprise-E, a replica of Picard's famous flute, a large computer display from Insurrection, and the captain's dress uniform seen in Insurrection and Nemesis.
|Data's uniform & painting|
The next display was of tricorders. My Trekkie heart was in heaven! I love tricorders! There was also a space suit from First Contact and Voyager. It looked a little beat up, but was still cool!
In the next room was the 4-foot model of the Enterprise-D!!!! It was SO cool to see in person. You could tell where the name had been removed and reapplied when the model was used as other Galaxy-class ships, most likely on DS9. They also had the model of the Excelsior and a replica of the model of the Enterprise from TOS. Along one wall was a massive display of uniforms from the new Star Trek movie. There was an admiral's uniform, two cadet uniforms, and a uniform from the Kelvin. There were also Kirk and Spock's TOS uniforms!
|Me with Captain Picard's uniform!|
|Mom & Captain Janeway!!|
We got to look at the pictures I'd taken in Kirk's chair, and Mom bought me the CD of all the pictures. From there, we went upstairs to the simulator ride. It was awesome!!! We were attacked by the Borg. The simulator rocked and shook. It even did 2 complete 360-degree rotations!!!! (Mom wasn't so thrilled about that part.)
With our Star Trek experience complete at that point, we had access to the rest of the science center for the day. We had a great time walking around looking at all of the other cool stuff there. We saw two ginormous polar bears!! They had an old hat exhibit, which Mom really enjoyed. Some of the hats dated back to the 1880s.
There was this huge skeleton hanging from the ceiling that we finally learned was a whale skull. I couldn't get over how big it was!!
We did an interactive exhibit about Kentucky's environment and wildlife. There was also a large exhibit about the human body, which reminded me of a toned-down version of the Bodies exhibit Jackie and I saw in Las Vegas.
Our last stop was the gift shop, but unfortunately they had sold out of almost all of their Star Trek merchandise. BOO! But I did buy the last uniform pins they had. They are replicas of the engineering and medical/sciences pins seen in the new movie.
After we were done at the science center, we walked around downtown, enjoying the sites. There is a lot of beautiful architecture and statues. We also got to see the Louisville Slugger factory, complete with 120-foot tall bat. We also looked around in the gift shop at the natural history museum. They had a bunch of neat things...and some weird stuff. Did you know they make a Ben Franklin and Shakespeare action figures??? (The Bard even comes with some
After that our time in Louisville had come to an end. We took one last look at the river walk, and then got back on the road. But we didn't make it far because we were almost out of gas. It was $3.96 a gallon!!! (Thank goodness my car gets great gas mileage!) We rode on for a bit before stopping to eat at a Cracker Barrel. When we got off the interstate, we saw another T-Rex and a sign for Dinosaur World, home to over 100 life-size dinosaur replicas! After we ate, we rode down to the entrance of Dinosaur World, where a family was taking pictures beside a huge triceratops. Several hours later we finally made it home.
|Just like Jurassic Park...|
I'm going to upload all of my pictures to Facebook soon. I would have done it sooner, but I had some technical difficulties.
|Even Data has computer trouble sometimes... :)|
I hope all of the Trekkies that read this blog have enjoyed it! I highly recommend going to the exhibition, if it comes near you. It was a day that this Trekkie will certainly never forget! And for all my non-Trek friends, thanks for allowing me to be the nerd that I am!
Live Long and Prosper, y'all!