Wednesday, October 30, 2013

NASA Curiosities

 
I think I know so much about Pasadena, but until two days ago I didn't know about the Jet Propulsion Lab gift shop. My friend, a big fan of space travel and JPL, had surgery. I wanted to get him a t-shirt. There had to be a gift shop. I called.

When I checked in at the gate and told the guard where I wanted to go, he said, "Gonna get an over-priced t-shirt?" and I said that was exactly what I wanted.

The shop is teeny, but it's there, and you can get shot glasses (the blue ones on the top right say "NASA"), mugs, toys, key chains and the like. And the t-shirt wasn't over-priced at all.

The people outside were waiting for a tour. The woman at the shop told me groups and individuals can tour JPL with an advance reservation. Make your reservations here.

All this time I've been skipping the annual open house to avoid the crowds. I'm up for a tour, though, as soon as my friend is out of the hospital.

13 comments:

Lisa said...

I spent some time (and money) there for Rachael's birthday last month. She was overjoyed with the gifts. And I even managed to book a tour for her with the rest of the family (minus me and baby). Really, where else can you live so close to such awesomeness??!!

Kalei's Best Friend said...

Wow,never knew they had a gift shop.. those blue glasses caught my eye! Thanks for the info.

altadenahiker said...

News to me. How overpriced is overpriced?

Petrea Burchard said...

Lisa, I know! I'll go back soon and buy more. In fact it strikes me that those coming for the Tournament of Roses Parade had better make their reservations now.

KBF, I like those, too. That's what I'm getting when I go back.

Karin, the t-shirt was $15.95. I didn't look at other prices but if that's indicative, it's not bad at all.

Bellis said...

That's good news. The gift shop used to be deep inside the bowels of JPL, and impossible to get to because of the tight NASA security. Glad to see they've put it in the Von Karman auditorium outside the security barrier now. I can highly recommend the monthly von Karman lecture series held there. http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/events/lectures.php

Did you look round the museum as well as visit the shop?

Petrea Burchard said...

Bellis, I had no idea there was a museum. Is it right there? I missed it.

I think there's still a store deep inside JPL, but it's not for public access.

Katie said...

It would be great fun to take a tour, and I would hardly call those t-shirts overpriced. I just started reading Mary Roach's Packing for Mars and highly recommend it for anyone into things space-related. I now know that I would probably be passed over for a mission to Mars as I snore. Darn!

Ms M said...

That's reasonable for a t-shirt. JPL sounds like a fascinating place to visit!
(Hope your friend heals well and quickly).

Petrea Burchard said...

I only snore when I'm sleeping, Katie.

Ms M, thank you, I hope he gets well soon. His condition was serious but perhaps caught in time.

TheChieftess said...

Let's not talk about snoring...

But I think it'd be cool to have some JPL paraphernalia!!!

dive said...

Dammit! Now my bank manager will hunt me down and kill me. JPL gift shop doesn't sell online but unfortunately for me, NASA does have a web shop. Now everybody's going to get space goodies for Christmas.
If my bank manager catches up with me I'll tell him it's all your fault.

Petrea Burchard said...

Johnson Space Center
http://shopnasa.com/store/

Kennedy Space Center
http://www.thespaceshop.com/

The link to the JPL shop doesn't work. I found out from a neighbor who works there that there is a larger, better stocked shop deep inside the JPL campus where we outsiders aren't allowed, unless we know somebody.

Come on, there's an astronomer on every block in Pasadena! We all know somebody.

Margaret said...

Hope your friend is feeling better.