Pleasant Visit

Clint Bradford

Our former mayor - and now council member - visited us yesterday to discuss 
politics and life ... even though we are 103K+ in population as California's newest 
city - Jurupa Valley - we continue the "small-town" atmosphere ...

Anyway, she brought me a Buzz Aldrin NASA t-shirt, as we reminisced of our 
wonderfully successful ARISS project back in April of 2012. The ISS contact 
was within our first year of cityhood, and all in attendance were moved by the 

Our project was a year in the making, with more than 2900 email messages
exchanged, several teleconferences with Houston, our Web site cited BY
NASA as an excellent example of promoting NASA and ARISS (site still up
at ), and resulted in the presentation of a prestigious
award from the Public Relations Society of America for excellence in public outreach.

But the quotation that had the most effect on me from the entire year -
With few adult dry eyes in the room after our contact, one of the
science teachers told my wife …
“It was one of those moments that takes your breath away:
talking to astronauts in space! A dream come true! The kid
(student) was speechless when he learned he was chosen
(to ask his question of the astronaut): He knew he was not
someone his teacher would have chosen; he was not one
of the "best" students …”
“… Up until that day, the kids didn’t realize THIS (studying
about science, technology, engineering and math) is what
we’re doing! Even our worst, goof-off kids were awestruck.”
~Gabe Baumert, teacher, Flabob Airport Preparatory Academy