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Apollo 11 Remembered: We Celebrate the ‘Summer of the Moon’

by Kurtis Kelly, Communications Specialist

This weekend, the world celebrates a mighty milestone: the Apollo 11 Moon landing’s 50th anniversary. The “Summer of the Moon” still inspires us today, and the Library has an excellent selection of books and movies to help us re-live and honor this event.

Just stop by the telescope-themed display now in the Library’s atrium, highlighting our Summer Reading motto, “A Universe of Stories”.

Picturing Apollo 11

The all-new book Picturing Apollo 11 is a fascinating photo-chronicle of 1969’s “moon fever”, capturing the nation’s excitement and an insider view of the mission with many never-before-seen images.

Moon Rush by space journalist Leonard David offers a historic panorama, from the Moon’s meaning in ancient mythology to ideas for future “Moon villages”.

The Step

What was the fast-paced space-race like for workers of the Launch Support Team? Fascinating behind-the-scenes stories abound in Martha Lemasters’ The Step: One Woman’s Journey to Finding her Own Happiness and Success During the Apollo Space Program.

Not to be overlooked are some of the best sci-fi stories inspired by lunar-focused imaginations. Moonrise is a new 11-story anthology with classics from H.G. Wells, Arthur C. Clark and other literary luminaries.

Families with young readers will enjoy Eight Days Gone, a fun read-aloud with special emphasis on the gear, equipment and spaceship used by the astronauts.

In addition to these print titles, the digital library has a vast selection—not surprising when there are 600,000-plus items at your fingertips. In the Cloud Library is First Man, the official biography of Neil Armstrong, along with Douglas Brinkley’s American Moonshot: John F. Kennedy and the Great Space Race.

In the Shadow of the Moon

You’ll discover some riveting documentaries in the Library’s DVD collection. In the Shadow of the Moon spans from 1968 to 1972, interviewing the surviving astronauts who made those dangerous but exhilarating Moon journeys. The Last Man on the Moon is a poignant story of Gene Cernan, who left his footprint and his daughter’s initials in lunar dust in December 1972.

Join us for the grand finale of the Summer Reading Program on Wednesday, July 31 at 7 pm at the Observatory, in a presentation titled “Fly Me to the Moon: NASA’s Golden Age and the Apollo Moon Landing”. Click here to register (it’s for ages 8 to infinity).

May the Apollo 11 anniversary inspire us this weekend—and for all times.