Author Archives: Kathy Hanser

Take a Look at These Cockpits

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Many visitors express the wish to see the interiors of aircraft and spacecraft on display in the Museum. But to protect these historic treasures, they must be displayed behind barriers, which makes it impossible to see inside. But there are several cockpits you can see in the Museum, a day devoted to getting up close   …Continue Reading


A Beautiful Bird Grounded

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When you visit the Udvar-Hazy Center and see the Air France Concorde on display, it’s hard to believe such a beautiful “bird” is no longer in service. I remember the day it flew into Dulles Airport on its final flight in June 2003, and how modern and elegant it looked as it landed. Once on   …Continue Reading


The Day I Met a Communist Defector

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When you are visiting the Udvar-Hazy Center, you will come across a display case that holds the flightsuit of a former MiG pilot named Frank Jarecki. It is located just in front of the Museum’s MiG in the Cold War Aviation area. Jarecki is not exactly a household name, I know, but someone with a   …Continue Reading


Countdown to the Moon, Thursday, July 16

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Regular summer visitors to the National Air and Space Museum are familiar with the Museum’s popular event, Mars Day. This year, Mars is taking a backseat to allow us to honor the 40th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing with Countdown to the Moon Day. The day will be filled with interesting and fun   …Continue Reading


Insect Power

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When a colleague of ours, the curator of the model airplane collection, Tom Dietz, passed away recently, I was reminded of the time I spoke with him about two of the Museum’s model airplanes that I find most intriguing. Designed and built by famed aircraft modeler Frank Ehling in the 1970s, they are the smallest flying   …Continue Reading