And the winner is...not Seattle! Museum of Flight spokespeople and state officials are making the best of NASA's decision not to send one of its four retired space shuttles to Seattle. The M of F was one of 21 facilities in the running for a shuttle, and the competition was intense. In the end, Seattle was passed over in favor of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, the California Science Center, Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and, for some reason, the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York.
Hard to take, really, given that our region has been a leader in aerospace innovation for decades. But what we're getting, M of F officials say, might be even better, at least from a visitor standpoint: NASA announced last year that Seattle will get its only "full-fuselage shuttle trainer" - possibly, as early as next year. That means we'll all be able to climb inside, something we would not be able to do with a real shuttle (those are strictly "no touchy").