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NASA Returns to Hemphill, Texas for Opening of new Patricia Huffman Smith Museum

HOUSTON, Texas USA /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Two events, including the opening of a new space-themed museum, to honor the space shuttle Columbia and her crew are planned in Hemphill, Texas on Tuesday, Feb. 1. Both events are open to the media and public.

At 7:45 a.m. CST the Sabine County Columbia Memorial Committee and the J.R. Huffman Public Library will host the eighth annual memorial for the STS-107 space shuttle mission at the First Baptist Church in Hemphill at 301 Highway 87 South. 
NASA speakers at the event include Gerry Schumann, of NASA Headquarters in Washington, and Debbie Awtonomow, of Kennedy Space Center, Fla. They were NASA leaders on-location in Hemphill during the Columbia recovery process.
At 11 a.m., a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Patricia Huffman Smith Museum, “Remember Columbia,” will be held. The museum is located at 375 Sabine Street. The 3,400-square-foot museum houses the story of space exploration, space related artifacts, a digital learning center and informational items about NASA’s space program. 
Johnson Space Center Director Michael L. Coats is scheduled to speak at the ribbon-cutting ceremony. 

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Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin ([email protected]) is a leading journalist, publicist, strategist, blogger, content marketing specialist and connector in the international attractions industry. She excels at writing about all aspects of design and technical design, production and project management. Areas of special interest include AV integration and show control, lighting design and acoustics, specialty cinema, digital video and world’s fairs. Judith has ties to numerous industry organizations. From 2005-2020 she ran communications, publications and social media for the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). In 2013, she was honored with the TEA Service Award. She was development director of IMERSA, and co-chair of the 2014 IMERSA Summit. She was publicist for the Large Format Cinema Association in the 1990s, now part of the Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA) and has also contributed to the publications of PLASA, IAAPA and the International Planetarium Society. Already making her mark as a magazine and book editor, Judith joined World’s Fair magazine in 1987, which introduced her to the attractions industry. Launching as a freelancer in the mid 1990s she has contributed to dozens of publications and media outlets including Funworld, Lighting&Sound America, Sound & Communications, Urban Land, The Raconteur and The Planetarian. She joined InPark in 2010. Judith earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute. She has lived in New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area, and now makes her home in Saint Louis, where she is active in the local arts and theater community.

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