What goes up...
We all know that what goes up must come down. Participants and spectators at our annual Upstairs Rocket Launch last Friday may be forgiven, however, for doubting the veracity of that old saw.
Each launch begins with the traditional “kiss goodbye” to the rockets in acknowledgement of the fact that sometimes even the student rocket recovery teams splayed across Memorial Field may not be able to find the rockets as they return to earth from their trip several thousand feet up into the sky. The “rocket scientists” had spent intense weeks guided by Mike (and alumni Noah Teich!) cutting, gluing, painting, and sanding the parts of their rockets, and the moment of truth for their design and construction work came as rocket after rocket ignited its engine and burst upward into the sky. On this day, some rockets landed on the baseball bleachers, others near the Middle School across the street. Most landed perfectly on the field, chased by a pack of students eager to catch it in mid-air on it’s way down. Some rockets went off arcing in stages, others went straight up and down. A few went up… and just seemed to keep going. We lost them in the sky and never were able to pick up the speck of their parachute deploying as they returned to earth. I like to think they are still up there, perhaps in orbit - brightly decorated in a rainbow of spray paint and carrying a payload of glitter - for astronauts to marvel at for years to come as they glide by in larger metal spaceships.
The Downstairs had no such troubles for their Rocket Launch on Thursday. The decorated seltzer bottle rockets shot up into the air powered by the pressure from a bike pump, and our entire community cheered as the pre-K students raced one by one across the field to proudly pick up the rockets they had created.
For two days, the boys and girls of Randolph reveled in the fruits of their labor as designers, engineers, physicists, craftspeople, and, yes, rocket scientists. By the way, if a rocket happens to land in your backyard in the next few days, let us know. It may be one of ours finally returning from a glorious trip into outer space!