HOUSTON, Feb. 26, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Space exploration has challenged, inspired, and improved us for more than half a century. Today, the Coalition for Space Exploration (Coalition), in partnership with the recently-formed NASA Visitor Centers Consortium announced an expansion of the Coalition's "Why Space Matters to the Future" video contest that encourages U.S. residents to visualize what life will be like in 10, 25, or 50 years if the boundaries of space continue to expand.
Entrants submit a short video capturing their vision of why exploring space matters and how it will benefit future generations. Three winners will receive a VIP trip to one of three NASA's visitor centers: Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida, the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Alabama or Space Center Houston in Texas. Winning videos will be shared with the public and national leaders.
"NASA and the space industry are on the threshold of a new era of space exploration and this promotion is a fantastic opportunity for the public to participate," said Bill Moore, chief operating officer, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. "We look forward to this contest opening the door for more ways for the public to personally engage in the adventure of space exploration."
From March 1- Apr. 7, entrants can upload their videos and share them online. Public voting takes place from Apr. 8-14, with number of votes accrued being one criterion used by a panel of judges. Three winners will be announced on April 17.
The Coalition has hosted similar video competitions in recent years, but on a smaller scale.
"It is amazing to take a successful concept to the next level and engage the millions of guests who follow us online and visit NASA's visitor centers each year," said George Torres, chairman of the Coalition. "Some people think the U.S. space program is ending, which couldn't be further from the truth. This contest engages the public during an important time, giving them a powerful voice to our nation's leaders."
For more information, contest rules and instructions, go to VisitNASA.com.
About the Coalition for Space Exploration:
The Coalition for Space Exploration is a group of space industry businesses and advocacy groups that collaborates to ensure that the U.S. remains the leader in space, science and technology by reinforcing the value and benefits of space exploration with the public and our nation's leaders, and building lasting support for a long-term, sustainable strategic direction for space exploration.
About the NASA Visitor Centers Consortium:
The visitor centers all support NASA's mission and goals of maintaining the integrity of NASA's memorable past, present and future; increase public interest in math and science careers through educational and mentoring programs as well as promoting the extensive benefits of space exploration.