Flyer for the Christa McAuliffe Center at Framingham State University's Sally's Night Celebration on Friday, June 16 from 7-9:30pm in the McCarthy Center Forum on campus. The flyer uses the Sally's Night logo in shades of pink and purple with a cartoon image of the moon. The flyer also features an image of Sally Ride from the 1980s: she is a young woman with brown curly hair and appears to be floating in the microgravity of low Earth orbit.Sally's Night Celebration Flyer
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2023 marks the 40th anniversary of Sally Ride’s historic STS-7 mission and becoming the first American woman in space.

To honor her and this special anniversary, the Christa McAuliffe Center at Framingham State University is partnering with the National Air and Space Museum and joining fellow Smithsonian Affiliates across the country to host an evening filled with FREE fun for learners of all ages!

Come celebrate on Friday, June 16 from 7:00pm to 9:30pm in the McCarthy Center Forum at Framingham State University and show us how you #ShineLikeSally!

Click here to visit the event webpage.

7:30-8:15: Keynote presentation by Dr. Margaret A. Weitekamp, Chair and Curator, Department of Space History, Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, Washington, DC

  • Space Craze: Understanding History and Fiction Using Artifacts
    Join Dr. Margaret Weitekamp as she discusses her recent book, Space Craze: America’s Enduring Fascination with Real and Imagined Spaceflight (Smithsonian Books, 2022). Written based on Weitekamp’s experience working with the Museum’s collections of spaceflight memorabilia and space science fiction objects, Space Craze surveys the long history of spaceflight, from the formative stories told by Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, to the historic flights of John Glenn and the Apollo astronauts, through the Space Shuttle era to the present. How does material culture – things such as toys, pins, buttons, mugs, and mission patches – illuminate the story of spaceflight as a particularly American endeavor?

7:00-8:30: Hands-on activities led by NASA Solar System Ambassadors and giveaways

  • David S. Ball: Test Your Knowledge About STS-7 and Dr. Sally Ride
    Prizes for answering questions about spaceflight, Space Shuttle Challenger, and America’s first woman in space!

  • Pat Monteith: Spinning Through the Solar System
    Choose from one of two different activities to build and take home: a spinning solar system or a Mars Ingenuity Helicopter!

  • Amanda Thompson: Humans and the Risks of Spaceflight
    Learn about space’s effects on the human body and how that affects close space exploration vs. far!

8:30-9:30: Stargazing with McAuliffe Center staff or interactive Solar System Explorers program


  • Registration is required. This event is free, and attendees of all ages are welcome!
  • Parking is available in the Maynard Road, Salem End Road, and Maple Street Parking Lots. Once parked, follow Framingham State University’s signs and the McAuliffe Center’s yard signs to the McCarthy Center. The Forum is on the second floor of the McCarthy Center, Room 212.
  • Stargazing is weather-permitting. In case of inclement weather or conditions inconducive for observing, the stargazing portion of the event will be cancelled and replaced with the Solar System Explorers program.
  • This project received support from the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative Pool.