Lance Patrick & Ashley Blankenship collaborated with Bishop, CA-based high school team Earth To Sky Calculus to send weather balloon carrying baby info to an altitude of 107,756 ft.
Richmond, VA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 11/02/2017 --Forget popping balloons, confetti guns, or color-coordinated cakes. A California couple recently took gender reveal to a whole other level – quite literally, that is. Recruiting the help of a S.T.E.M. high school team by the name of Earth To Sky Calculus, and it's leader, Dr. Tony Phillips, as well as Mr. Phillips' wife, Katharine. Lance Patrick and Ashley Blankenship set out to send their baby's stuffed monkey, along with a printed baby announcement, to the edge of space.
Well-versed in sending numerous weather balloons to the stratosphere, for research purposes, the Earth To Sky Calculus team sent a 9-foot, custom black parachute, whose interior lining hid the color corresponding to the baby's gender and featured stitched personalized wording.
Prior to being launched, the balloon was outfitted with multiple GoPro cameras, while its payload was also equipped with multiple GPS tracking devices, as well as several other devices that would monitor parameters such as air pressure, temperature, altitude, and radiation.
The location in the mountains of Bishop, California was selected as the balloon's launch site. On September 24th, 2017, with the students helping throughout the process, Mr. Patrick and Ms. Blankenship had the honor to launch the balloon themselves – and send off their happy news to stratospheric heights.
The balloon reached exactly 107,756 feet (20.4 miles) in altitude before popping. What followed was a violent dance, during which the 6' balloon expanded over 50 times its size before exploding. The dance concluded with the parachute opening and revealing the inside color of chute, along with the revealing gender message, and the couple's baby's name. During flight, the coldest part of atmosphere encountered by the monkey and balloon payload was a stunning -58.2 degrees Fahrenheit. The payload ultimately landed in California, about 150 miles away from launch site.
"When you're this excited about something, you want to tell the world! So we did!" said Mr. Patrick. He continued, "We are glad to have set a new bar for gender reveals. We can't wait to see how we inspire other couples with doing something as innovative as our gender reveal, for their own. What's more, it was delightful to collaborate with the Earth To Sky Calculus student team, and make our contribution towards promoting STEM education."
Concluding his statements, Mr. Patrick said that "The launch date is of great significance to us, as it marked the 20-year anniversary of my father's death. It was a great way to celebrate his life, as well as our baby's impending arrival, and create a lasting memory, which our child will be able to look back to with fondness."
Mr. Patrick, an aspiring comedian, has recently taken time off of standup to be there for his girlfriend, Ms. Blankenship, an aspiring actress, and share the beauty of the pregnancy experience. The couple, which bases out of Los Angeles, CA has made a move to Richmond, VA to be close to her family and friends while they await to "give birth to their little earthling."
The baby's official due date is December 7th, 2017, and the happy couple cannot contain its excitement for its offspring's upcoming debut to the world.
Mr. Patrick has shared the video on YouTube (Youtube.com/LancePatrick). Based on all accounts of those who have already taken a sneak peek at the footage, it is, indeed, expected to reach a meteoric sized number of views on the platform - fit of the caliber of the breathtaking story it is depicting.