Logan Kugler and two dozen colleagues “Made it so” last Saturday in Illinois. The www.sendpicardtospace.com team launched action figures of Picard, Riker and Data (aboard a model of the Enterprise-D) and Kirk, J.J. Abrams and Roberto Orci (aboard the Enterprise NCC-1701) into the stratosphere via a giant latex Kaymont balloon also fitted with multiple cameras and tracking systems. The captains and equipment spent two hours aloft, 90 minutes of that in the stratosphere, until the balloon popped and the payload parachuted safely back to Earth. Kugler sent StarTrek.com a photo essay capturing the big event, which was the first of its kind. Check it out below, and keep an eye on StarTrek.com for a first-hand recap of the campaign and event written by Kugler exclusively for StarTrek.com, along with video footage of the action figures’ adventures in space.
Memory cards courtesy of SanDisk
Ordering 25 Subway sandwiches to feed the crew
Breaking out the helium tanks
Discovery Channel doing interview
Balloon filling begins
Picard (and Riker and Data) getting ready to fly!
Kirk (and J.J. Abrams and Roberto Orci) getting ready to fly!
Hard at work
Last minute adjustments
Star Trek communicator buttons all taped in for the flight
Attaching the balloon
Max Schlickenmeyer filming for the final video
Up, up and away
The pursuit - we had a 9-car tracking convoy, including a dedicated tracking vehicle
Inside the tracking vehicle - we had an entire car just filled with trackers on their laptops
The Jeep in safari mode
We're close! We know it's landed within 300 yards of here.
"I see it! I see it!"
We found it!
Picard's precision landing. He sure knows how to land a starship!
The picture-perfect landing from another angle
Smile for national television!
The launch crew
The launch crew (cont.)
Hard at work on radio interviews