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Apollo 11 Moon Landing Celebration July 20

KILL DEVIL HILLS — Five decades ago, Wright Brothers National Memorial broadcast the original news coverage of the July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 moon landing and will celebrate the anniversary of that moment in American history with a weekend of events.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, the public is invited to watch at 7:30 p.m. July 20 a special rebroadcast of the news coverage of the original lunar landing outside the visitor center. The anniversary celebration begins at 5 p.m. when visitors can explore the park, hear ranger talks and stroll through the visitor’s center. The program begins at 6:30 p.m.

Wright Brothers National Memorial visitors watching a live broadcast of the moon landing the evening of July 20, 1969. Photo: NPS

Wright Brothers National Memorial will remain open until 9:30 p.m. July 20 and park admission fees will be waived that day. Throughout the evening, visitors are encouraged to participate in a costume contest by dressing up as astronauts, or in 1960s attire. Beach chairs or blankets for comfortable viewing of the rebroadcast event is recommended.

Some may recall that 50 years ago, the Wright Brothers National Memorial hosted a live news broadcast event for the Apollo moon landing as it was happening.

“This year’s rebroadcast event allows visitors to reminisce about their experiences 50 years ago and exposes new audiences to this monumental moment in our history,” according to the park service.

The celebration kicks off July 18 with a special space-themed movie showing at Dowdy Park in Nags Head, sponsored by the First Flight Foundation. There will be special, space-themed ranger programs July 18-20.

“Fifty years ago at the site of man’s first powered flight, hundreds gathered to watch man’s first steps on the moon. Join us as we go back in time and explore how the Wright Brothers’ innovation led to this monumental event, and how far we’ve come since then,” said Outer Banks Forever, the official nonprofit partner of Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, and Wright Brothers National Memorial and partner in the anniversary celebration.

The celebration is in partnership with Outer Banks ForeverFirst Flight Foundation and First Flight Society.

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Staff Report

The story was compiled by staff members of Coastal Review Online.