Thinking about watching SpaceX make history when the company launches NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley from the Space Coast on a Falcon 9 rocket? There are plenty of viewing options for everyone, even those trying to keep their distance from others due to the coronavirus.
The launch is currently scheduled for Saturday at 3:22 p.m.
Note: Parking alongside State Road 528 (the Beachline) is not permitted for this launch or along other state highways and roads, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
Several Brevard County city officials have recommended launch viewers download the Waze navigation app to get updated traffic information.
Read more about the variety of launch viewing hot spots, known to locals and space enthusiasts alike, then click through the map embedded in the story to learn more.
During normal circumstances, there are more options. Some of my favorite viewing spots are closed for this particular launch but you can check out the full list here.
A Max Brewer Bridge: Open to pedestrians only
The A Max Brewer Memorial Bridge over the barrier island on State Highway 402 offers a view of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center from the Indian River. The space center will be on your right and the Falcon 9 rocket is to the left of the Vehicle Assembly Building (the giant building with the NASA meatball on it).
A warning to those concerned about the coronavirus: for the first launch attempt Wednesday the bridge was packed. Wearing a mask is highly recommended and if you have preexisting health conditions, seeking another viewing location is probably a safer bet.
Due to the launch, the bridge will be closed to vehicle traffic one hour after the launch.
If you go:
Max Brewer Bridge is located at the east end of S.R. 406 and Garden Street
Take a look at the interactive map below and click on the viewing spots (camera symbol) for more information. The launch pad and landing sites are also listed (rocket symbol), to help provide the best idea of where to look at come launch time. Mobile users click here to view the interactive map.
Continue reading below the map.
Cape Canaveral beaches
The city of Cape Canaveral has limited public beach parking but the view from Cape Canaveral’s beaches of the launch will be spectacular. Cherie Down Park and other city parks are open but expected to fill up quickly.
City officials recommend downloading the Waze App to help navigate road closures.
Also, please be mindful it is sea turtle season and always be sure to take your trash with you.
If you go:
Beach parking available is available off Ridgewood Avenue, from Washington Street down to the Cocoa Beach Pier. Here is a lift of parking and traffic restrictions due to the launch.
Cocoa Beach Pier
The beaches around the Westgate Cocoa Beach Pier offer good views of the launch, once the Falcon 9 rocket rises above the jetty.
The launch pad is to the north of the pier, right up the coast.
If you go:
Parking is available at the pier lot but expected to fill up quickly. Click here for hours and parking prices.
Cocoa Beach parks
Cocoa Beach has a variety of beach-side parking options and public parks that are open, including Alan Shepard and Lori Wilson parks.
If you go:
Here is a full list of parking available in Cocoa Beach. It’s $2.50 per hour or $10 all day.
In Titusville, 15 miles across the Indian River, almost parallel to multiple launch pads are two Brevard County parks popular to locals for launch viewing.
The towering Vehicle Assembly Building is visible from the Space View Park boardwalk. The park has a beautiful memorial for veterans of all wars and the U.S. Space Walk of Fame, honoring the Mercury and Gemini missions.
On launch day, get there about an hour or two early to grab a good spot in the grass along the waterfront or on the dock. Bring lawn chairs, sunscreen and water. There are bathrooms and the park is near downtown Titusville. Parking can sometimes be a problem. Again, get there early.
The Space Walk of Fame Foundation broadcasts the NASA countdown on park loudspeakers during launches.
Titusville’s Parrish Park is a 36-acre park on both sides of the A. Max Brewer Causeway off State Road 402. The park is only 10 miles from Kennedy Space Center launch pads.
If you go:
Space View Park 8 Broad St. Titusville, Florida 32796 Hours: Dawn to dusk
Parrish Park at Titusville 1 A. Max Brewer Memorial Pkwy, Titusville, FL 32796 Hours: Dawn to dusk
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