NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The excitement could be felt in the air, or the atmosphere, Tuesday in Times Square, as people gathered to watch billionaire Jeff Bezos’ space flight.

As CBS2’s Natalie Duddridge reported, there was a sense that when man first stepped on the moon it felt like some far off dream, but now space travel is something people can realistically imagine doing in their lifetime.

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Cellphones were up recording the historic moment of space tourism. Spectators watched the Amazon founder’s rocket, New Shepard, on a massive digital screen at 42nd Street and Seventh Avenue.

One father shared the moment with his son on FaceTime.

“I’m excited about it. I think that this is where we need to be going as humanity, we need to be going to space,” he told Duddridge. “It’s an exciting first step to getting there.”

Other parents brought their daughter to watch the new era of space tourism unfold.

“For her, what’s cool is this is the first experience to really watch somebody going to space,” dad Patrick Culligan said. “So it’s like history literately right now for Brea.”

If space tourism becomes more accessible in Brea’s lifetime, would she consider going up?

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“I wouldn’t do that,” she said.

“I’m going to stay right here on the ground,” mom Kristen Culligan added.

Duddridge did find many willing volunteers, who said if they had a couple hundred thousand dollars, they would do it in a heartbeat.

“I’ve been fascinated with it since I was kid, so to see it actually happen in my lifetime is really cool,” said a man named Michael. “If I had extra money laying around, if business was going well, then, yes, of course. Why not go?”

“I would definitely go up and I would be in the first crew to go up if I had the chance,” Alex Candelaria said.

When the crowd watched the crew land safely back on Earth, one man said there was a sense the ride wasn’t over — that it’s just the beginning of regular people heading to space.

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The only thing we need now is for it to become more affordable.

Natalie Duddridge