A space shuttle coming to St. Cloud? It’s possible | Space

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A space shuttle could be touching down — metaphorically — in St. Cloud.

Gov. Tim Walz last week said a donor had inquired about placing a space shuttle in central Minnesota. Walz told MPR News’ Politics Friday about the offer but gave few details about the project.

“Someone wants to give us a space shuttle — the space shuttle, a real space shuttle — to move to Minnesota,” he said.

State Sen. Aric Putnam, DFL-St. Cloud, on social media, said the shuttle could be showcased next to a new children’s museum in downtown St. Cloud. The proposed site is currently a parking lot.

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A rendering of the proposed St. Cloud space shuttle location.

Aric Putnam via X

In an interview with MPR News, Putnam said Felicity-John Pederson, a graduate of St. Cloud’s Apollo High School and founder of a technology company called LVX System, owns the shuttle and is interested in bringing it to St. Cloud.

The full-scale mockup of a shuttle orbiter, known as Inspiration, is currently housed near the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, but needs to be moved.

“It was primarily for training,” Putnam said. “It’s the real thing. The toilets even flush. It just never went to space.”

Pederson said the shuttle was at the end of its life cycle and scheduled to be destroyed when his company acquired it for research it was doing with NASA. NASA wanted the shuttle donated for education, he said, possibly to St. Cloud, near the Mall of America in Bloomington or another location.

“The most likely seems to be St. Cloud, but that decision is not made,” Pederson said.

The full-scale mockup of a shuttle orbiter, known as Inspiration, is currently housed near the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, but needs to be moved.

Courtesy Felicity John-Pederson

Cassie Miles,…

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