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It has been 50 years since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped onto the moon and left behind the first human footprint in space. Conceived under the Kennedy administration, the goal was to "land a man on the Moon and return him safely to Earth". The vision was finally turned into reality on July 16, 1969.
To celebrate the golden anniversary of this scientific marvel, various space-themed events and programs have been organised in institutions across the US. The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, has elaborate 5-day plans to mark the occasion including the “Apollo 50 Festival”. The jubilations will culminate on July 20 with a late-night event titled “The Eagle has Landed” at the museum to commemorate the exact time the first steps occurred.
Visitors will be able to see Neil Armstrong’s Apollo 11 spacesuit on display for the first time in 13 years. Multiple state-of-the-art digital simulations have been set up to bring alive the historic mission in real-time. The visualizations include the actual flight communication transcripts. For their minor yet budding astronauts, the museum will host a screening of “Ready Jet Go!”, the animated space-themed PBS KIDS series. This will be followed by live music performances, games and a meet and greet with Jet, the series star. On July 19, 2019, or ‘Discover the Moon Day’, various fun activities will take place throughout the museum, including astronaut costume designing, trivia and scavenger hunts, science demonstrations from museum staff, stargazing and an Apollo 11-themed musical performance by electronic-duo Quindar.
As the anniversary of the first lunar landing draws closer, the US is abuzz with space fever.
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