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December 2, 2011 at 4:07 PM

Trip into space contest draws 49,384 entries

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, came to Seattle when the Space Needle space trip contest was announced earlier this year. (Photo by STEVE RINGMAN / THE SEATTLE TIMES)

When the Space Needle announced in August that it will send someone into space to celebrate it’s 50th birthday, it expected to be inundated with entries.

It was.

By the time the contest closed Thursday, 49,384 people had turned in applications for a trip 62 miles into space and six minutes of zero gravity.  The trip will take about a half-hour and will cost the Space Needle about $110,000.

A computer will randomly trim the number of entrants to 1,000 by Dec. 9.  Those finalists will be asked to submit a one-minute video about why they want to go into space.

The number of hopeful space travelers will be narrowed to 40 and their videos will be put online for a public vote on Feb. 15. The public will have a month to vote and the top 20 will face a fitness challenge and the winner will be announced in April.

“We wanted to do something amazing,” said Ron Sevart, president and CEO of the Space Needle, when the contest was announced. “This is why the Space Needle was built, the dawn of the Space Age.”

 

Comments | More in General news | Topics: contest, Seattle, Space Age

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