50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing Celebration at UTEP
In his landmark speech at Rice University in 1962, President John F. Kennedy declared, “We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win.”
Fast forward to July 19, 1969. The crew of Apollo 11 fired their engines in lunar orbit that day to prepare for Eagle’s landing onto the surface of the moon the following day. This extraordinary feat had never been done before by any country in the world, and it fulfilled the profound vision of Pres. Kennedy. He did not live to see his dream fulfilled, but his inspiring spirit could be felt by all on that special day. It was a moment in time when people all over the world held their breath in awe.
On Friday July 19, 2019, the UTEP College of Engineering, along with community partners, will be celebrating the 50th Anniversary of this historic event that forever changed the world while inspiring generations of engineers and scientists to explore the unknown. The public is invited to join in the free space-related festivities to be held at various parts of the UTEP campus.
What: Panel Discussion on the Historical Influences on the Future of Human Spaceflight
When: Friday, July 19, 2019 – 5:00pm
Where: UTEP Union Cinema
The panel of experts will include Dr. John “Danny” Olivas, former NASA astronaut and Special Assistant to the Dean of Engineering, Chris Orwoll, Executive Director of the New Mexico Museum of Space History, Darren Cone, Executive Director of the Center for the Advancement of Space Safety and Mission Assurance Research, and others. Questions about the past and future space exploration are encouraged, especially from K-12 students, to start the discussion. When asked about the significance of spaceflight history, Cone replied, “the success of future human spaceflight endeavors will reflect our willingness to learn from both our previous success – and our failures. Listening to, and learning from, those who have experienced both outcomes must be weaved into the culture of the next generation of space engineers and scientists.” Panel discussion will start at 5:00pm on Friday, July 19, in the UTEP Union Cinema.
What: Free Public Viewing of Apollo 11 Film (98% Rotten Tomatoes)
When: Friday, July 19, 2019 – 6:00pm
Where: UTEP Union Cinema
The 2019 documentary of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission is solely comprised of archived footage of the first space mission to land humans on the moon, some of which had never been made public before. Footage includes the launching of the Saturn V rocket up until the recovery of astronauts Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong, and Michael Collins. Viewers’ imaginations will run wild as they realize how this amazing feat was accomplished using only the technology available in 1969, and computers far less sophisticated than the cell phones of today. Sofia Hernandez, ExciTES Coordinator and computer science undergraduate shared, “students can simulate the moon exploration of the Apollo 11 during our ExciTES middle school session.” The 90-minute movie will begin at 6:00pm at the UTEP Union Cinema, immediately following the panel discussion.
NOTE: After the showing, Dr. Danny Olivas will host a Q&A session about the film and will be giving away signed copies of his children’s book, “Endeavour’s Long Journey”.
What: New Mexico Museum of Space History – Wonder on Wheels
When: Friday, July 19, 2019 – 3:00pm to 9:00pm
Where: Parking Lot UN3 - between the Union Building and the Liberal Arts Building
The Wonder on Wheels is an RV converted to serve as a mobile museum. This year its theme is human spaceflight and lunar exploration – including actual moon rocks. The Wonder on Wheels will be open to the public from 3:00 – 9:00pm on July 19th and will be located in Parking Lot UN3, between the Union Building and the Liberal Arts Building. Staff from the New Mexico Museum of Space History will be on hand to direct visitors and answer questions.
A week of robotics & space exploration at the ExciTES Summer Institute.
What: Star Gazing and Constellation Tour
When: Friday, July 19, 2019 – 7:30pm to 10:00pm
Where: UTEP Centennial Museum
The day’s fun will be wrapped up with interactive learning experiences coordinated by the UTEP Centennial Museum, Center for Space Exploration and Technology Research and the Insights Museum. Activities will include star gazing and a constellation tour from 7:30pm to 10:00pm at the UTEP Centennial Museum.
Guests visiting all activities should come in comfortable attire and walking shoes. Parking passes and other details will be provided after completing our questionnaire.
A special thank you to Texas Gas Service for their generous support for this event