Skip to main content
  1. Leisure
  2. Travel
  3. International Travel

Thor's Hammer goes into space

See also

By Bob & Sandy Nesoff

It’s not often that the average person gets to hold an ancient artifact more than 100,000 years old. But then Astronaut Tom Jones is no average person.

Young and good looking, Jones could have played a movie astronaut, but he is the real thing. Tom, as he prefers to be called, spent more than 52 days in space aboard the Space Shuttle, zipping around the earth for thousands of orbits over a period of 1,272 hours. He also logged three space walks for 19 hours.

But one of his biggest thrills was flipping an ancient stone hammer that looked much like the Hammer of Thor is the sci fi movies.

“Here we are, flying through space,” Jones laughed, “and I’m flipping this millennia-old stone weapon in a weightless vehicle orbiting the earth.”

Part of his time spent in space was spent mapping ancient cities and archeological sites, finding some that could not be detected from the ground. The hammer was discovered in one ancient burial location.

Today Jones spends much of his time extolling the virtues of the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex a short jump from the mega-attractions of Orlando. But while Orlando may have Mickey Mouse, the KSCVC has enough space hardware and artifacts to keep both adults and fidgeting children interested and occupied.

And for Jones the greatest thrill is seeing the Atlantis Space Shuttle on display at the center. Atlantis was the craft that took him on his last ride into space.

Anyone witnessing a space launch can not help but come away impressed. Even from the safety of viewing stands perhaps three miles away, the crackling of the rocket as it ignites, the shock wave it produces and the ground vibrating beneath your feet, is an experience witnesses remember for the rest of their lives.

Visitors to the KSCVC have an opportunity to take part in activities that simulate the training astronauts undergo. The ATX (Astronaut Training Experience) is an intense half day providing hands-on training giving the participant an idea of the rigors of space flight. ATX was designed with input from several astronauts.

Jones’ favorite attraction, Atlantis, offers a life-like and quite realistic simulation of the craft’s eight minute blast off into orbit. Smaller visitors will enjoy the “Angry Birds Space Encounter” with intergalactic egg chasing comes alive. There are challenges such as Eggsteroids and Red Planet Laser Challenge.

Jones quietly voiced the hope that youngsters might become so enthused by the attractions and simulations that it might produce another generation of space explorers.

www.kennedyspacecenter.com

Advertisement

Leisure

  • Corned beef
    Find out how to prepare a classic corned beef recipe in a slow cooker
    Video
    Slow Cooker Tips
  • Left handed eating
    Find out why you should never eat with your left hand
    Video
    Wives Tale
  • Subway message
    Subway customer finds 'Big Mama' written on her order
    Video
    Subway Message
  • Deviled eggs
    This is the only deviled egg recipe you’ll need this Easter
    Delicious Eggs
  • Natural solutions
    Natural beauty: All natural solutions to life's little beauty headaches
    Camera
    Natural Solutions
  • Chocolate souffle
    Love chocolate? Get tips on making the perfect chocolate souffle every time
    Video
    Recipe 101

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about Examiner.com and apply today!