Thursday, October 7, 2010

Gemini Spacecraft Model Contest

This ad ran on the back of comic books in 1967 and at the time seemed just too good to be true.
According to an old issue of Boys Life, the winner was Alen Hanshew (age 13) of Portland.
According to a Revell spokesperon:

To confirm for all, this was not a model. This was an actual replica that was produced by McDonald Douglas. The capsule had to be shipped via railroad direct to the museum. The prize was awarded via a sweepstakes type entry, in order to win; the winner had to agree that they would donate to a local museum for two reasons, (1) So that others may enjoy and (2) Because it had to be shipped via railroad direct to the donation site.

A little more trivia for you, the cost of building this kit was $5,000. In 1967 $5,000 was unheard for any type of prize. Plus the additional model kits that the kid won. At least the kid got to keep all the model kits as he watched his beloved capsule given away. There were numerous glitches along the way in production. At the last minute McDonald Douglas said they would not provide the capsule. However, after seeing all the press etc, they some how found a way to complete the project and deliver to the museum.
The capsule's current location is in the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.

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