Blasting off to a holiday destination in the sky

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The end of February usually drags. Everyone’s understandably impatient for the long Chicago winter to end. While this year’s shockingly mild weather has made me slightly more tolerant of slushy puddles and dark afternoons, I’m still yearning for a change of scene.

Perhaps somewhere like …  Mars? Or Ceres?

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratories (JPL) has recently released a bold series of vintage-inspired travel posters for our celestial neighbors far and near. Reminiscent of mid-20th-century tourism campaigns, the posters are plastered with brightly colored retro-styled paintings and pithy slogans “Europa: discover life under the ice” and “Kepler-186f: where the grass is always redder on the other side”.

Click through the gallery to find text explaining recent discoveries and the history of space exploration regarding the destination at hand, providing a compelling snapshot of space travel’s exciting frontiers of possibility. For example, the fiery Mars edition (in a color-block poster worthy of Mad Men) is accompanied by the following:

"NASA's Mars Exploration Program seeks to understand whether Mars was, is, or can be a habitable world. Mission like Mars Pathfinder, Mars Exploration Rovers, Mars Science Laboratory and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, among many others, have provided important information in understanding of the habitability of Mars. This poster imagines a future day when we have achieved our vision of human exploration of Mars and takes a nostalgic look back at the great imagined milestones of Mars exploration that will someday be celebrated as “historic sites."

Take an armchair tour of our solar system and beyond and then download your favorites for free. Guess how I’m planning to decorate my new office while we wait for spring to arrive…

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