USGA Helps Celebrate Space, Golf

October 4, 2007

By Doug Stark, USGA

Far Hills, N.J. - On Oct. 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik I into space, a monumental achievement that captivated the world and ushered in the space age. 

Retired NASA astronaut Brian Duffy displays the 'Shuttle Putter' that was used by his crew in space during the 1996 Endeavour voyage (NASA mission STS-72), at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Hutchinson, Kan., on Sept. 28. (Ellie Kaiser/USGA)

This artificial satellite was nearly the size of a basketball and weighed only 183 pounds.  The successful launch took 98 minutes to orbit the Earth.  That single event propelled the United States and Soviet Union space race that dominated the Cold War era. 

Fifty years later, the world continues to make great advances regarding space exploration. 

In conjunction with this historic event, the USGA Museum partnered with the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Hutchinson, Kan., to celebrate the 50 th anniversary of Space Exploration and the launch of Sputnik I. 

"The launch of Sputnik is not only a real event in the history of spaceflight, but is also a key symbolic event in the history of the human race," said Chris Orwoll, Cosmosphere President and .  "October 4th was the date Sputnik became the first man-made satellite to be launched into space, but it was also the date that many dreams were realized.and many new dreams were born.  For the first time, mankind's aspirations took them beyond the sky and into the stars.  That's something to celebrate and the Cosmosphere is thrilled to be part of this celebration."

To commemorate the relationship between golf and space, the museum loaned Alan Shepard's Moon Club and Brian Duffy's Shuttle Putter.  This marked the first time that both the Moon Club and Shuttle Putter have been displayed together outside of Far Hills.  Both will be on view at the Kansas Cosmosphere until

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