America’s number one selling cowboy singer, Michael Martin Murphey, will lead off an evening of music, award presentations and fireworks on April 4 to open the 21st National Space Symposium at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs.

Singing cowboy poet Michael Martin Murphey is a Grammy winning artist and one of the world’s most respected singer-songwriters in pop and country-western music. He has six gold records, including the first gold cowboy music album since Marty Robbins. His hit songs include “Wildfire,” “Cherokee Fiddle” and “Carolina in the Pines.”

Record attendance is expected at the opening ceremony, which is co-sponsored by The Boeing Company. Corporate host for the event is James F. Albaugh, president and chief executive officer of Boeing Integrated Defense Systems.

The festivities begin at 6:00 p.m. with a performance by Michael Martin Murphey. The award ceremony features the first-ever presentation at the symposium of the Astronaut Memorial Foundation’s Alan Shepard Technology in Education Award. Also to be presented are three prestigious Space Foundation awards: the Douglas S. Morrow Public Outreach Award, Space Achievement Award and Education Achievement Award.

Following the opening ceremony, a festive reception, co-sponsored by ITT Industries, will take place in the Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. Exhibit Center. The 34,000-square-foot exhibit center will be the largest in symposium history, featuring displays from more than 120 companies, agencies and organizations, and will showcase the latest in civil, commercial and national security space technology.

To bring the evening to a glittering close, General Dynamics will co-sponsor a fireworks spectacular beginning at 9:00 p.m. The pyrotechnic show above The Broadmoor golf course will feature more than 300 firework displays, which guests will enjoy from viewing areas at the Lake Terrace and Lakeside Terrace. Following the fireworks, General Dynamics co-sponsors a dessert reception.

More than 6,500 registrants, guests, speakers, exhibitors and media are expected to attend the 21st National Space Symposium, held April 4-7 at The Broadmoor. Hosted by the Space Foundation, the symposium is the premier annual space industry conference anywhere in the world and features an integrated program of speakers and panels focused on civil, commercial and national security space issues. Educational activities, including a Space Career Fair, are also planned.

Confirmed featured speakers for the symposium include: Rep. Ken Calvert, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics; Dr. John H. Marburger, III, science advisor to the president and director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, Executive Office of the President; Dr. Ronald M. Sega, director of defense research and engineering for the Department of Defense; Adm. Timothy J. Keating, commander of North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command; Gen. James E. Cartwright, commander of U.S. Strategic Command; Gen. Lance W. Lord, commander of Air Force Space Command; and Lt. Gen. Brian A. Arnold, commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center.

Additional sponsorship highlights include the media center, co-sponsored by Lockheed Martin; the corporate partnership dinner, co-sponsored by Raytheon Company; the corporate partnership reception, co-sponsored by the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce; the General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award luncheon, co-sponsored by the Colorado Space Coalition; and the Space Technology Hall of Fame Awards dinner, co-sponsored by Northrop Grumman.

Additional co-sponsors include: Analytical Graphics, Inc., ATK Thiokol, Cisco Systems, Computer Sciences Corp., EcoQuest International, Florida Space Authority, Harris Corporation, Honeywell Aerospace, Infinite Links, Inmarsat,, Space News, Space Systems/Loral, SpaceVest, Stellar Solutions, and Swales Aerospace.

For complete conference details and online registration, visit or call the Space Foundation toll-free in the United States and Canada at (800) 691-4000.

Photos available upon request.

About the Space Foundation

Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., the Space Foundation is a national nonprofit organization that vigorously advances civil, commercial and national security space endeavors and educational excellence. The Space Foundation has offices in Washington, D.C., and Cape Canaveral, Fla. In addition to the National Space Symposium, the Space Foundation annually conducts, along with its partnering organizations, Space at the Crossroads, set for May 18, 2005, in Washington, D.C., and Strategic Space 2005, scheduled Oct. 4-6, 2005, in Omaha, Neb. For more information about the Space Foundation, visit