CAMP RED CLOUD, South Korea — Many servicemembers at Camp Casey will get a closer glimpse of the moon than ever before on Sept. 1.
A Family Morale, Welfare and Recreation official will travel to Houston next week and bring back a rock collected during the Apollo 17 mission for display during their Labor Day celebration, which also will include a big-top circus and other events.
"[The rock] has to be in my personal possession from the time I pick it up," said FMWR’s Frank DeSilva. "When I get here I have to turn it over to Army security, and they’ll secure it until the morning of the event."
The mare basalt rock — figured to be about 3.75 billion years old — collected by astronaut Harrison Schmitt in the moon’s Taurus-Littor Valley in 1972.
The approximately quarter-pound rock is encased in acrylic and will be placed next to a moon display at the festival.
DeSilva says it’s the first time anyone is aware of that a moon rock has appeared at a base in South Korea.
The rock display and festival will open at 10 a.m. and close at 10 p.m. at Gateway Park.
Meanwhile, the Dong Choon circus will be performing multiple shows, which will include five motorcycle daredevils riding around in a 25-foot circular steel cage.
The Chinese national circus performers, who have been cleared for base access, also perform trapeze and tightrope acts, along with other circus mainstays like juggling.
It’s also the first time a circus has come to Camp Casey, FMWR director Denise James said.
Tickets for the circus cost $5 for adults and $2 for children 12 and younger.
The festival also will have children’s rides, horses, free fast-food eating contests, dancing, live music and fireworks at the end of the evening.