Moffett Hosts Out of This World Festival

Celebrating the first human in space Yuri Gagarin.

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Josh Keppel
Claypool plays with the backdrop of Hanger 1 behind him.
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Josh Keppel
NASA's Ames Research Center was the setting for Yuri's Night Bay Area, one of hundreds of celebrations around the world honoring space exploration. It commemorates mankind's first venture into space, by Russian Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin on April 12, 1961.
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Sheila McEntire
Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin was the first human in space on April 12, 1961. Not sure if he saw any Yip Yips out there, but I did on Saturday evening as the sun started to set on Yuri's Night Bay Area.
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Josh Keppel
Yuri's Night Bay Area had a varied line-up of acts performing on two stages. Unfortunately, I missed MC Supernatural, DJ Q-Bert, Vibe Squad and many other groups that played between noon and 5 p.m., when I arrived. I did get there in time to catch N.E.R.D.
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Josh Keppel
Super producer Pharrell Williams and team hyped the crowd from the main stage in the late afternoon.
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Josh Keppel
Pharrell Williams gets some skin while playing hits like "Lapdance" and "Rock Star."
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Getty Images
After N.E.R.D., an air show took to the skies above Moffett Field in Sunnyvale, CA.
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Josh Keppel
The Dancetronauts, a group from Santa Cruz who performs at events like Lovefest SF and Halloween in LA, gathered to watch the air show.
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Josh Keppel
The airshow consisted of a few biplanes doing tricks above the airfield.
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Josh Keppel
Maverick and Goose buzz the tower.
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Josh Keppel
As biplanes circled overhead, a NASA fighter jet sat idle on the ground for a closer inspection.
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Taftville Fire Company No. 2
Crew members from the Raygun Gothic Rocketship chat and watch the airshow.
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Josh Keppel
The Raygun Gothic Rocketship was a big hit with the folks. A line of people waiting to board the aircraft was a constant site on Saturday.
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Josh Keppel
The 50-foot high retro-futurist rocket ship was originally built for Burning Man 2009 by local artists Sean Orland, David Schulman, and Nathaniel Taylor, but was a perfect fit at Yuri's Night. The door out of the top offered a great view of the festival.
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Josh Keppel
Raygun Gothic crew members Rachel Riggin (left) and Sunny Kate enjoy themselves Saturday after a two-day setup with the clouds started to darken for a rainy breakdown on Sunday.
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Josh Keppel
Artist Sean Orlando climbs the ladder to take a look inside.
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Josh Keppel
Raygun Gothic Cosmonaut Nathaniel Taylor prepares himself for his spacewalk.
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Josh Keppel
Taylor takes to the open door.
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Josh Keppel
Look out below!
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Josh Keppel
Taylor is ready for blast off.
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Josh Keppel
Kids have fun at the controls of the Raygun Rover S.C.O.U.T. (Science Crew Operations Utility Testbed), a Raygun Gothic Rocketship support vehicle.
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Josh Keppel
An aircraft from the Hiller Aviation Museum in San Carlos sat outside of one of the hangers at NASA Ames Research Center.
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Josh Keppel
Some Goths check out a little race car that looks like it might be battery powered.
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Josh Keppel
This was my favorite aircraft on display, the F-104 Starfighter a high-speed flight research jet with a hydrogen peroxide thruster system. Behind it across the pavement was a big C141.
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Josh Keppel
NASA employee Nick Veronico cruised around the event with a unique cranium apparatus.
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Josh Keppel
Brian Black welcomes participants into his green, recycled mini-golf course. "This is all about sustainability," Black said of the course construction and educational elements.
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Josh Keppel
Instead of windmills and castles, golfers putted around bicycles, solar panels and recycling bins.
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Josh Keppel
Lovely ladies were cruising around the event in pairs... Some with white hats, and some with hands on hips, like Sophia Smith (right) and Devon Caroulis.
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Josh Keppel
One pair of ladies took a seat to have a picnic after the air show. They stayed a safe distance away from the main stage, where they could still hear the music just fine and they had a great view of Hanger 1.
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Josh Keppel
Loulabelle Gray (left) points something out to Mennlay Aggrey in-between bites of dinner. Gray said, "I figured we'd eat before we start dancing." Smart!
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Josh Keppel
After the airshow at 6 p.m., Les Claypool took the stage at 7:30 p.m.
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Josh Keppel
Claypool brought fellow Bay Area resident Sam Bass, cellist from LOOP!STATION, as well as drummer Paulo Baldi and Mike Dillon (not pictured) from Critters Buggin and Garage A Trois.
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Josh Keppel
Claypool had this local gig in the South Bay before heading to Coachella and then onto a tour of the Southwest through the end of April.
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Josh Keppel
Claypool seemed to have the biggest turnout of the day, with fans crowding in and going wild for the bass guitar superstar.
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Josh Keppel
Claypool plays with the backdrop of Hanger 1 behind him.
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Josh Keppel
Claypool looks back at the rhythm section of Dillon (right) and Baldi (left).
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Josh Keppel
For those on Les Claypool's email list, a last-minute deal was sent out a few days before the event with promo codes giving fast-acting fans the chance at scoring tickets to the event for $25 and $40, instead of the normal $50 price-tag.
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Josh Keppel
View from the side of the stage reveals the large rhythm section.
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Josh Keppel
As night fell on the festival, the skies darkened and the lights came on.
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Josh Keppel
On the other side of the festival grounds, a dance area was set up with groups like Vibe Squad, Glitch Mob, Beats Antique and Hamsa Lila taking the stage.
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Josh Keppel
I didn't make it over to that side of the festival until after 9 p.m., when Beats Antique took the stage to do a DJ set that the people were loving.
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Josh Keppel
Sidecar Tommy was on the laptop with his partner David Satori on the strings, with some coconut milk on hand just in-case a mid-set blood transfusion was needed.
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Josh Keppel
Brodie Sullivan wore my favorite helmet of the night. He was at the festival performing with Savage Henry, an AV group that I missed. Sullivan and I marveled at the fact that this event was celebrated in 217 cities in 47 countries last year. Sullivan pointed out that we are the lucky ones saying, "We've got something here, this is the biggest one!"
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Josh Keppel
There were a lot of fun cosmonaut outfits to be seen at the festival.
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Josh Keppel
A tent with tables and chairs was set up next to the food vending area, where people could take a load off, but still hear the music from the DJ stage.
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Josh Keppel
This fun zeppelin art car looked didn't look so great in the daylight, but at night it really popped. Too bad Moffett Field resident Airship Ventures wasn't on display at the festival.
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Josh Keppel
After Claypool finished up, rapper Common took the main stage and did some sweet cover songs as well as a bunch of freestyle rapping.
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Josh Keppel
These cool banners had images of flight and space visionaries, and they looked really cool at night as the wind took the faces in and out of the light.
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Josh Keppel
There were a lot of fun outfits at the event. Jill Naiman had some cool Exo Boots that this frog man was digging.
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Josh Keppel
Closing out the dance area was Hamsa Lila, a local band playing live again after a little hiatus.
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Josh Keppel
Hamsa Lila was a nice way to cool things down at the end of a long day, with the helpful soothing sounds of a trio of melodic singers.
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Josh Keppel
Stella Lefevre, as Leeloo from the movie The Fifth Element, and Matthew Conte, dressed as a cosmonaut, danced at the front of the stage for Hamsa Lila.
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Josh Keppel
Hamsa Lila on stage with cool lighting by the people that put on Symbiosis in mid-September.
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Josh Keppel
Sang Nguyen was all smiles looking like Willy Wonka with that wig and those shades.
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Josh Keppel
One of the Hamsa Lila singers did a cool little dance during the set.
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Josh Keppel
Back over at the Main Stage, The Black Keys closed the night out.
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Josh Keppel
Drummer Patrick Carney is the nephew of SF music wiz Ralph Carney, who sometimes plays on stage with the boys, but not this time.
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NBCConnecticut.com
Guitarist singer Dan Auerbach was great as always.
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Josh Keppel
From the looks of this image, you'd have no idea the band was playing on a NASA air base.
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Josh Keppel
The Black Keys headed to Florida after this gig, not stopping at Coachella on their way there.
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Josh Keppel
Dusty Burton said he and his lady Laurie Agee were happy to see that I had a schedule in my pocket showing what was going on because once you got to the festival, there really wasn't much way of keeping track of who was playing when and where. Hopefully next year they can put some schedules up for people to see.
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Josh Keppel
As the cold wind whipped across the tarmac, these guys had the right idea with their full-body fur suits. In other Snuggie news... the Giants are giving away 20,000 "wearable blankets" to fans on Friday, April 23.
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Josh Keppel
A look at the tail end of Starfighter F-104 with the Raygun Gothic Rocketship in the background.
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Josh Keppel
The Rocketship let people board all night until the festival closed at midnight, and then they launched it.
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Josh Keppel
All day long vendors were on hand to sell things, and teach people about new technologies in one of the hangers on the base.
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Josh Keppel
Artist's booths were dwarfed by the massive building.
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Josh Keppel
I don't think I've see as cool of a site upon exiting a concert as Hanger 1 in all its glory (with a NASA short-bus waiting to shuttle people to their cars which were parked somewhat far away).
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