National Sport Launch 2017 Coming To Alamogordo

Mar 10, 2017

The Fellowship of Las Cruces Area Rocketry Enthusiasts (FLARE) and the Spaceport Model Rocket Association, the model (sport) rocketry clubs of Las Cruces and Alamogordo, are hosting the National Association of Rocketry’s annual National Sport Launch this year in Alamogordo.

The National Association of Rocketry (NAR) is a non-profit tax-exempt scientific organization (IRS EIN 13-6165575) dedicated to consumer safety, youth education, and the advancement of technology in the hobby of spacemodeling (sport rocketry) in the United States. Founded in 1957, the NAR is the oldest and largest spacemodeling organization in the world with over 5900 members and 165 affiliated clubs across the U.S.

Every year, the NAR sponsors three national events for its membership and the general public: their national convention (NARCON), their national competition launch (National Association of Rocketry Annual Meet, or NARAM), and the National Sport Launch (NSL). These events are held in a different city each year, organized and run by local affiliate clubs. FLARE and SMRA hosted NSL in 2010, and are doing it again this year over Memorial Day Weekend (May 27-29) in Alamogordo. In addition to three days of rocket launching by hobby rocketeers of all ages from all over the country, we will also have several rocketry vendors from around the country on site selling rocket kits and components.

As part of NSL 2017, we have organized tours of several area space and aerospace-related points of interest: the Sunspot Solar Observatory near Cloudcroft, the warehouse of the New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamogordo (where artifacts that have been donated or loaned to the museum but not yet put on display at the museum itself are stored and prepared for display), the High Speed Test Track at Holloman AFB in Alamogordo, and the historic V2 rocket launch facilities at White Sands Missile Range. With the exception of the Sunspot Observatory these sites are not normally open for public viewing, so this represents a rare opportunity for the general public, and we want to get the word out to the local communities.