The New York Times is out this month with a fascinating photo retrospective on the Apollo 11 mission prior to its 50th anniversary. The pictures include behind-the-scenes snapshots of the training that went into planning for the mission, the launch and lunar landing, and the crew’s triumphant return to Earth.

Some of the highlights include the candid shots the astronauts took from inside the lunar lander and from the “magnificent desolation,” as Buzz Aldrin described it, of the Moon’s surface. Still, the entire series is worth checking out on the anniversary of such an historic human achievement.

Visitors to the Science Center can also see A New Moon Rises, a traveling exhibition from the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. Showcasing more than 60 impressive images of the Moon taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera launched in 2009, A New Moon Rises is located in the tunnel connecting the Science Center’s Oakland Building with the McDonnell Planetarium and is on display for visitors to view for free.

For anyone looking to explore more about the Moon, the Science Center is also hosting activities commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission, including OMNIMAX® Theater screenings of Magnificent Desolation: Walking on the Moon (through July 21) and SciFest: Apollo 50th Anniversary Moon Landing Party, a free event on Saturday, July 20, from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Michael Wense
Contributing Writer