Nearly 1,000 people attended the launch, which featured a long, on-stage interview with William Shatner. Shatner reminisced about the difficulty getting and keeping TOS on the air, and celebrated the fact that, against the odds, the franchise survived and continues to thrive 50 years later.
William Shatner also unveiled the Royal Canadian Mint’s new Captain Kirk commemorative coin, part of a set that includes Spock, Scotty and Uhura . Another set of silver coins released by the Mint feature iconic scenes like Spock and Kirk stepping through the Guardian of Forever from “The City on the Edge of Forever.”
The Royal Canadian Mint is even releasing a special 2016 $200 pure gold coin in the shape of a Star Trek delta insignia. Only 1,500 coins will be minted and they can be pre-ordered now for a whopping $1,299.95 CAD.
Local brewery Clocktower Brew Pub was also on hand to launch their new Trek-themed microbrew, The Final Frontier.
Rene Auberjonois and John de Lancie, in town for Ottawa Comic-Con, were also present at the event for photo ops but did not appear on stage outside the VIP area.
Cosplaying volunteers from the Ottawa Star Trek clubs the IKV Phoenix and Ladies Who Trek ran activities at three themed lounges throughout the evening: Vulcan, Klingon and Uhura. Guests could interact with the characters and participate in photo-ops, a tribble toss, trivia, crafts, and Vulcan and Klingon-themed games.
Other entertainment included an aerial act and martial arts performance to Star Trek music, from 100% Martial Arts & Fitness.
The main exhibit itself, staged in a 10,000-foot warehouse adjacent to the museum, allows “cadets” to see memorabilia, props and costumes, and tour impressive recreations of Sickbay, Engineering, the transporter room and the Enterprise-D bridge. At several points, participants can use their wristband to interact with the exhibit.
From the Starfleet Academy Tour website:
The Starfleet Academy Experience will provide newly-minted cadets with a first-of-its-kind “Trek Tech” immersive experience that takes the student from orientation into a rigorous training program involving simulated science, engineering, medical and command courses, through to graduation, and finally to the deck of an active starship. The experience is enriched with the actual science behind the science fiction of Star Trek as the participants learn about emerging technologies such as a functional tricorder, NASA’s warp drive theory, and the latest experiments with phasers and teleporters.
The exhibit will be up in Ottawa until Labour Day, and is set to tour to New York, Chicago, Calgary and other cities starting later this summer.