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Saturn V rocket docks at its new site

HUNTVILLE (AP) — The recently restored Saturn V moon rocket has docked at its new site in the visitors center at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, which is preparing for a 50th anniversary celebration in January of America in space.

The Apollo Command Module joined the Service Module, Instrument Unit and other pieces of the rocket, which is now indoors, suspended above the floor of its new home.

It can be seen through the glass front of the Davidson Saturn V Center, part of a nearly $22 million project that also includes a visitors entrance, tram system, 350-seat theater/auditorium and full-service commercial kitchen to host special events.

Brenda Carr, vice president of advancement for the space center, said the new building seemed huge when the walls went up a few months ago, but the feeling is very different with the giant Saturn V inside.

“We have joked here that the building shrank after the rocket moved in,” Carr told The Huntsville Times in a story Tuesday. “I think it’s something that strikes you with awe as you stand under it.”

The basic construction is expected to be completed in November, then crews will start moving other Apollo and Saturn artifacts from the museum’s collection into the new space.

The grand opening is set for Jan. 31, 2008, as part of events in Huntsville to celebrate the 50th anniversary of America putting its first satellite, Explorer I, in orbit. It was launched aboard a modified Redstone rocket developed in Huntsville.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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