Museum to Host Motor Coach Tour

(Alamogordo, New Mexico) – Reservations for the October 2021 Trinity Site motor coach tour, hosted by the New Mexico Museum of Space History and International Space Hall of Fame Foundation, began on April 20 through the museum’s website and almost immediately filled the six reserved coaches. Reservations are now being held on a waiting list. The tour, which is pending current Department of Health restrictions due to the pandemic, is scheduled for Saturday, October 2, 2021. Trinity Site is where the world’s first atomic bomb was detonated in 1945.

“Reservations for the October Trinity Site Tour have far exceeded all of our expectations,” said Christopher Orwoll, Museum Executive Director. “We’re very excited to see this outpouring of interest for the tour, which we feel is an indication of how much the public is looking forward to getting out and about again.”  Reservations are being taken on a first come, first served basis and will be limited to the number of motor coaches available for the tour. Capacity of the coaches may also be restricted due to current health advisories or restrictions.

In this historic photo, military personnel are seen moving “Jumbo” to Trinity Site. (Photo courtesy National Park Service)

Johnny Powell, President of the International Space Hall of Fame Foundation which co-hosts the event with the museum, confirmed that six motor coaches have been reserved for the event. “In past years, the Trinity Site Motor Coach Tour has filled two coaches and occasionally three, but with the interest we’ve seen so far, the Foundation felt it prudent to reserve a total of six coaches. Our goal is to ensure a safe, comfortable, and educational event for everyone joining us, and this October it looks like we’ll have a record turnout.” Powell added that coach capacity was reached April 24, and that all new reservations will be placed on a waiting list. “We encourage people who would like to reserve a space on our coach to register so that if space becomes available they’ll already be on our list.”

White Sands Missile Range typically opens Trinity Site to the public on the first Saturdays in April and October, although both events in 2020 and the April 2021 tour were cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Several thousand people usually visit the site on those dates.

“As always, the safety of our visitors and staff are our highest priority.  If the Missile Range approves the October Trinity Site tour, we’ll work with the tour bus company to make sure all required safety protocols are in place and strictly adhered to,” said Museum Executive Director Chris Orwoll. “In light of the uncertainty of the event, we are only taking reservations at this time. Once the tour has been approved, we’ll begin the actual registration process.”

The New Mexico Museum of Space History and International Space Hall of Fame Foundation host a motor coach tour to the site each April and October as part of educational outreach and as a fundraiser for the Foundation.  Local historians accompany guests on the coach, giving an in-depth talk on the bomb and its history, along with unique insight into local history. Once on site, guests enjoy a brown bag lunch, visit to the McDonald House and go on a walking tour of Trinity Site. On the way back, guests wind down with an onboard movie and upon return to the museum are treated to a guided tour.

Reservations are available through the museum’s website and no charges will be incurred until the tour is confirmed by White Sands Missile Range. Once the tour is confirmed, those who have made reservations will be contacted to finish the registration process. Tickets include the round trip to Trinity Site, site tour, brownbag lunch, onboard movie, and guided tour of the museum. The ticket price will be $95 per person, or $85 for museum members. In addition, the collectible book “Trinity Site: The History of an Atomic Bomb Historic Landmark” by local historian Jim Eckles is available for purchase when guests register online, or the book can be purchased separately at the museum gift shop.  To reserve your tickets or for more information, visit Trinity Tour Reservations.

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