African American Pioneers in Aviation and Space

The Struggle for Equal Access to the Skies

February 10, 2018 | 10:00am - 3:00pm
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
Free, Parking $15

Join us as we celebrate African American History Month by revealing past pioneers and giving families the opportunity to inspire the next generation of innovators in aviation and space.  African Americans have made, and continue to make, significant contributions to flight and space exploration despite the overwhelming obstacles they had to overcome. Enjoy guest speakers as they share their personal tales of triumph, participate in hands-on activities that will challenge families to be pioneers in space and aviation, and hear inspiring stories of African Americans who have overcome challenges and refused to be hidden figures.

Visitors can:

  • Learn about the "Triple Nickles" smokejumpers while designing and building a parachute
  • Draw your own pilot escape and evasion map like the Tuskegee Airmen carried during World War II
  • View special collections from the National Air and Space Museum Archives related to African American figures
  • Hear from NASA astronaut Alvin Drew about the constant learning and experiments taking place aboard the International Space Station (11:00 am)
  • Take a special highlights tour of the Museum focused on African American accomplishments in aviation and space (11:30 am, 1:30 pm)
  • See what the night sky looks like in Africa and hear the stories Africans created about contellations in the night sky in a portable planetarium show (11:30 am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm)
  • Enjoy Flight of Fancy story time readings of Nobody Owns the Sky: The Story of "Brave Bessie" Coleman and related hands-on activites (11:00 am, noon, 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm)
  • Listen to a panel discussion hosted by Legacy Flight Academy about the careers available in aviation and engineering (12:30 pm)
  • Watch the "Take a Giant Leap" puppet show, featuring stories of great air and space adventurers, including the Tuskegee Airmen (12:00 and 2:00 pm)
  • Get to know NASA astronaut Alvin Drew and Tuskegee Airman Col. Charles McGee (2:00 pm)

This program is made possible through the generous support of Northrop Grumman Corporation.