It was the spring of 1981.
A whitish visage emerges from the Orbiter Processing Facility. Rolled back on brand new tires, its fresh silica surface sparkles under the power of floodlights. It dwarfs the swarm of people, mostly reporters, trying to get their first peek at this strange machine: the world’s first true orbital spaceship. And it was finally free, after being trapped by endless impromptu but critical touch-ups for the past year.
“All personnel not directly involved with the convoy operations, please stand behind the barriers!”
A dog within the audience began barking voraciously at the otherworldly shape; children tugged at their parents’ arms, trying to get closer. The gaping bells of four J-2S engines, flanked by two smaller hypergolic engines for orbital manoeuvres, caught their first whiff of the noisy night air. Next to emerge were the aft domes of twin fuel tanks situated above the double-delta wings, with centimetres of clearance from the upper wing surface. Each measuring 5.5m across, these common bulkhead tanks would feed the main engines with hydrolox fuel during ascent. Finally, twin vertical fins gated off the breadth of fuel tanks and wings.
“People will pay thousands of dollars to see what we’ve seen.”
“Just to see it roll out, completely done…first time we’ve seen it away from the scaffold…it looked like a newborn bird.”
Someone in the crowd waved a flashlight; it illuminated the small Stars and Stripes on the fin tips. Flashbulbs went off like there was no tomorrow, perhaps because there would no longer be a chance to get this close once the beast was vertical.
The spaceplane slowly made a pirouette as it backed up, revealing more of its forward end; a cockpit resembling that of an airliner. Slightly behind it, written on the cargo bay doors in a more subtle font size, was its name: Enterprise.
“I wanna see it fly.”
Drawing crowds along with an unquantifiable force, the spaceplane slowly made its trek to the Vehicle Assembly Building, where the other parts that would take it to space were waiting.
Largely ignored by the cameras and tucked within the VAB was the booster slated to fly with Enterprise, S-1D-601. Upon first sight, it was a 10m wide tube with few aerodynamic characteristics to be desired; a lumbering hulk mostly dictated by ballistics, despite poorly imitating a swept-wing aircraft with its four outsized fins. This booster probably received far less attention for being less novel than the spaceplane. After all, the S-1D was a reusable evolution of the Saturn V’s first stage; its five F-1A kerolox engines were relics of the Apollo program, with their brutally reliable gas-generator cycles designed for pumping out a collective 9 million pounds of thrust.
Once stacked, this booster would sit below the aerodynamic orbiter. With the lumbering overwing tanks obscuring the last traces of grace the Space Transportation System had on the pad, this combination was most crudely termed “turkey (or any number of birds in a similar vein) stuck onto a barrel”. But as the program name, “Space Transportation System” suggested, it was meant to be a space truck.
On this night, everything moved slowly and calmly; yet these objects were designed for anything but that. Come launch day, the S-1D booster would provide the raw power needed to leave Earth’s atmosphere, after which Enterprise's efficiency can shine. And it, as well as the orbiters, would come back to fly again and again, time after time.
– Inspired by the 1981 IMAX feature “To Boldly Go”, narrated by Leonard Nimoy. 
 OTL, this IMAX feature is known as Hail Columbia!