Son of Star Trek creator beams in to Vulcan festival

The son of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry landed in Vulcan, Alta., to launch the 15th annual Spock Days and Galaxyfest.

The son of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry landed in Vulcan, Alta., to launch the 15th annual Spock Days and Galaxyfest.

Eugene Roddenberry Jr. led the ceremonies on Friday evening at the southern Alberta town, which celebrates the iconic sci-fi series every year.

Roddenberry was invited this year to unveil a memorial set in front of the Vulcan Tourism & Trek Station. 
William Shatner as Capt. James T. Kirk in The Trouble with Tribbles episode of Star Trek. The original series, created by Gene Roddenberry, lasted from 1966 to 1969. (CP Photo)

He became emotional as he read the plaque, which features a quote from his late father.

"My father was a very humble guy," Roddenberry told The Lethbridge Herald. "He never felt like he should be honoured. Everyone else had the same idea, he just put his on TV."

The guest of honour talked to fans, who came from all over North America and Europe, about the Star Trek philosophy of embracing diversity and working together.

The original series, starring Canadian-born William Shatner, lasted from 1966 to 1969.  It has since become a cult phenomenon, sparking 10 movies with an 11th  — a prequel — due out in 2009.

Roddenberry admitted he was never a fan until his father died in 1991 at age 70.

"It was then that I opened up my eyes and ears and spoke to the fans who told me they were truly affected by [the show]," said Roddenberry, himself a television producer.

The weekend festivities include skydivers, a Star Trek art exhibit and fashion show and Klingon karaoke.