The event is free, but it’s also one of the hardest ticket in town to get. It’s our 3rd year of attending but we were really lucky. I almost gave up on getting tickets. I forgot to log on when it came out in March, but fortunately the Wednesday prior to the event, a few tickets opened up and I snagged the 9:00 Sunday spot.
Based on the past 2 years, the event always seem to be held on a hot day, so bring water, and wear loose, comfortable clothing. IMHO If you have young kids (like under 6 years old) *LEAVE THEM AT HOME*. If they need a stroller or need to be carried, this is not the event for them. It’s hot, the lines are long, and the exhibits are not scaled down for kids. Or, drop the kids off at the kids zone and find someone willing to sit with them for 4 hours. Don’t make your kids suffer because you think it’s “cool” for them to learn about Space.
If you don’t get an early slot, like before 9:30, be prepared to wait in super long lines. I swear, every year it seems to get more and more crowded, and that only means the next year you hope you can snag tickets so you can go back to the exhibits you missed the prior year. For us, we missed the 3D movie the past 2 years (average wait is 50 minutes.. no lie!) and the Fabrication department and this year we finally got to see those exhibits.
Despite the 45 minute wait, we repeated a visit to the Space Flight Operations, aka: Mission Control, which is always a great exhibit to visit! Be sure to get your special “I’ve been to the center of the universe” sticker!
We got our annual photos at the NASA logo, a picture take by the MDL Qwip Solar, and went the Robotics area, which Stephen is working on the software for one of the components!
This year the photo booth was a DIY Selfie… 60 years of NASA!
Overall its still a 5-star experience. Free event and they even give you free stuff from stickers to photos to the JPL reusuable bag. Props to NASA JPL for allowing us the opportunity to run over your campus, and thanks to the hardworking employees for taking time showing off your work.