Students from 50 high schools across Texas will gather to launch 70 rockets up to two miles high and across the speed barrier as SystemsGo hosts Rockets 2012, Thursday, May 3 – Sunday, May 6, near Willow City north of Fredericksburg. For the first time, a second launch site will be set up near Houston on Saturday, May 12 – Sunday, May 13, 2012
SystemsGo is a Fredericksburg-based nonprofit organization that created the educational rocket program now used in high schools in Texas. First-year students design rockets to carry a one-pound payload over one mile high. Second-generation projects will launch rockets designed to break the sound barrier and reach heights up to 12,000 feet.
The Hill Country launch takes place at Hillview Ranch, located north of Fredericksburg off the Willow City loop. Signs will be posted, and maps to the site, launch schedule, and complete listings of activities are posted online at www.systemsgo.org.
The launches are free and open to the public. The area should be considered an experimental testing range. Schedule may vary, mobility will be limited, access will be controlled, and visitors need to be aware that this is the first flight of all rockets.
For information on lodging, area restaurants, and other events in the Fredericksburg area, visitors are encouraged to contact the Fredericksburg Convention and Visitors Bureau, at 830-997-6523 or www.fredericksburg-texas.com. Organizers also are asking the public to consider supporting the Willow City Fire Department Fundraising Dinner that same weekend, as the fire department volunteers lend support to the launches.
SystemsGo is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization formed to help spread the program to other high schools in Texas. The goal of SystemsGo is to promote engineering studies and research, develop work force skills, and encourage students to enter academic and career paths in STEM fields that lead to careers in the engineering industries, using project-based activities. SystemsGo is endorsed by NASA and certified by The Space Foundation.
Anyone wanting to start a program, to provide support, bring a group, or to learn more about SystemsGo can visit www.systemsgo.org or call 830-997-3567.