Space Center Houston welcomes journalists from around the globe to experience the legacy of the first lunar landing. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the lunar landing and its remarkable achievements among an array of significant Apollo artifacts under one roof.
Space Center Houston welcomes the media to work with us on a story about the legacy of the Apollo era and how the world can be a part of the experiences.
Thank you for sharing this opportunity to experience some of the most iconic artifacts in human history with your readers and viewers.
Accomplishments and honors
- Space Center Houston opened Oct. 16, 1992 and the successful nonprofit is in its 26th year.
- More than one million visitors annually come to explore its extensive space collection.
- A science and space exploration learning center to more than 250,000 students and teachers from all over the world.
- Tie your story to the power of these artifacts to inspire the world and as a source of pride for the United States.
- The Apollo 11 mission marked the first time humanity brought back samples from another planet. See here the world’s largest collection of moon rocks on public display.
- Space Center Houston is the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center, where guests can experience Historic Mission Control, where NASA monitored all the Apollo lunar missions.
A collection that brings the Apollo era to life
Give your readers a close look at the legacy of the Apollo program within Space Center Houston’s museum collection. See the Apollo 17 command module, the last crewed missions to the moon, touch a moon rock and visit Historic Mission Control. Discover The Real Thing.
Space Center Houston’s Apollo era exhibits and artifacts include:
- The flown spacecraft the Apollo 17 command module named “America”, used on the last manned mission to the moon.
- The actual presidential podium used during President John F. Kennedy’s speech, “We choose to go to the moon,” given at Rice University, Houston, Texas in 1962.
- A spacesuit collection featuring Commander Pete Conrad’s spacesuit worn during his Apollo 12 lunar walk, with moon dust still on it.
- Apollo era flight director Gene Kranz’ memorable red, white and silver sequined vest worn while directing Apollo 17, the last mission to land on the moon.
- The Lunar Roving Vehicle Trainer that astronauts used to prepare for missions to the moon. The vehicle, which has no steering wheel or brakes, was used for Apollo 15-17 missions.
- A prototype of the Apollo 13 lithium hydroxide canister device, which was fashioned together by the astronauts with the help of the engineers in Mission Control. Made up of a flight manual cover, socks and duct tape, the device filtered the dangerous levels of carbon dioxide in the lunar module.
- The Lunar Vault, kept in a pure nitrogen environment, which holds the largest collection of rocks, core samples, sand and dust on public display.
- An actual moon rock you can touch – one of only eight touchstones in the world.
- The Lunar Module LTA-8, which helped with the development of the first Lunar Module flown in space during Apollo 9.
- Space Center Houston takes visitors to Historic Mission Control at NASA Johnson Space Center aboard the NASA Tram Tour.
How the public can experience the legacy of the Apollo era
The nonprofit science and space exploration learning center is counting down to the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing and is set to bring the legacy of the Apollo era to life.
Share the events and activities to experience the Apollo era at Space Center Houston. To celebrate the center is holding a monthly Thought Leader Series with Apollo era legends, provide special exhibits, education activities and space films.
Restoring a National Historic Landmark
The nonprofit science and space exploration learning center is leading the fundraising to restore Historic Mission Control and preserve this National Historic Landmark, which changed the course of human history.
Go inside Historic Mission Control and see the restoration in progress. Cover how the nonprofit is raising funds to restore the iconic room, learn about details in the room and how the nonprofit is working to preserve it for future generations and the world.
Historic feats that informed the future of space exploration
Houston is where the Apollo astronauts lived and trained for their missions. Today’s human space program stands on the shoulders of these legends. Their inspiration drives us toward future deep space exploration with such initiatives as the Orion spacecraft and the Space Launch System, the most powerful rocket that NASA is working on now.
Share how our learnings from the Apollo era have paved the way for the future of space exploration.
Space technology in your life
From handheld cordless vacuums and other battery-operated equipment to the insulation in your attic, NASA technologies are more prevalent in your life than you think. Explore the hundreds of space spinoffs that resulted because of the innovation at NASA and our missions to the moon specifically.
- The trials and triumphs that took place within the Apollo Program paved the way for developments in commercial products and services.
Called spinoffs, these developments have made a great impact in life on Earth.
Apollo Program spinoffs include:
- Memory foam
- Water filters
- Anti-glare filters for lenses, glasses and screen
- Improved kidney dialysis technology
- A programmable pacemaker
For more NASA spinoffs, visit https://spinoff.nasa.gov/.
Key Messages & Talking Points
- Space Center Houston welcomes people from around the globe to experience the legacy of the first lunar landing. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the lunar landing and its remarkable achievements among an array of significant Apollo artifacts under one roof.
- The nonprofit science and space exploration learning center led the fundraising to restore Historic Mission Control and preserve this National Historic Landmark, which changed the course of human history.
- The historic site will be restored by the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 in July 2019.
- The significant 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission symbolizes how anything is possible. We are all explorers who can do our part to expand human knowledge and be a part of the NASA mission.
- The historic Apollo lunar landing on July 20, 1969 paved the way for future space exploration and opened the door to boundless curiosity and discovery.
- Space Center Houston’s fall luncheon To the Moon and Beyond on Oct. 23 will honor Apollo flight director Gene Kranz and proceeds will further benefit the restoration of Historic Mission Control.
- The Apollo 11 mission was the first time in history humans set foot on the moon. It captivated the world as millions of people tuned in to watch one of the greatest human achievements of all time.
- Historic Mission Control is being restored to its Apollo era configuration. The restoration plans include illuminated flight control consoles and wall displays to recreate an authentic Apollo-era control room configuration. When completed, the room will display a historically accurate look of the iconic site for future generations.
- A visit to Houston “Space City” has never been more exciting than during the 50th anniversary year where guests will be in the home of mission control and where President John F. Kennedy delivered his legendary address at Rice University.
- Throughout this year and 2019 Space Center Houston will honor the Apollo era anniversaries with special events and we’ll take a look back at the historic feats of the Apollo era. Visit Space Center Houston, the home of the largest collection of moon rocks on display in the world.
- Touch a moon rock, see flown spacecraft – the Apollo 17 command module and see up-close Astronaut Pete Conrad’s moonwalker spacesuit.
- The launch of the Apollo 11 mission fostered peace and simultaneously furthered humanity.
- The learnings from those historic steps on the moon set the stage for us to train the next generation who will first set foot on Mars.
Who is Space Center Houston?
- Space Center Houston is a nonprofit science and space exploration learning center, a Smithsonian Affiliate, the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center and a Certified Autism Center.
- We are partners with NASA but separate – not part of the government.
- Space Center Houston is a premier educational center and draws more than 250,000 teachers and students from around the world to visit the center annually to experience our educational space museum with more than 400 things to see and do.
- Space Center Houston welcomes 1 million visitors annually.
- We draw visitors from around the world. 82 percent of our visitors come from outside the greater Houston area, including 34 percent from other countries.
- We have an extensive space museum with the largest collection of space artifacts in the southwestern United States.
- Space Center Houston provides a full range of services and programs for all visitors.
- The center engages people through authentic STEM learning experiences.
How do you buy tickets or plan a trip to the center?
- Space Center Houston is open every day of the year except Thanksgiving and Christmas. You can buy your ticket online at spacecenter.org.
- Tickets at the door range from $24.95 for children to $29.95 for adults with discounts for seniors and members of the military.
- Lunch with an Astronaut is $35.95 for children and $69.95 for adults.
- Level 9 is $179.95 per person.
- We offer discounts to readers of our newsletter and those who follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Connect with us!
- Save on admission with a CityPASS and explore Space Center Houston plus four other top attractions. Purchase a CityPASS in-person or online at spacecenter.org/citypass.
- It’s $49 for children and $59 for adults.
Subject matter experts on hand
William T. Harris, Space Center Houston, president and CEO
- Harris oversees the strategic direction of the nonprofit science and space exploration learning center, Space Center Houston.
- The center is leading the fundraising for the $5 million restoration campaign to restore Historic Mission Control by the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 in July 2019.
- The nonprofit will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 with a Thought Leader Series featuring Apollo era astronauts, flight directors and flight controllers, a space film series, a moon art exhibit, and Pop-up Science Labs with hands-on STEM learning experiences. A public celebration event will be held at Space Center Houston on July 20, 2019.
- As the next step in its ongoing fundraising campaign to restore Historic Mission Control, Space Center Houston will host a fall luncheon To the Moon and Beyond on Oct. 23. The luncheon will honor Apollo flight director Gene Kranz.
Paul Spana, Space Center Houston, exhibits director, space historian
- Spana supports the planning of the Historic Mission Control visitor experience. He has contributed to the planning of the NASA Tram Tour experience to the Historic Mission Control Viewing Room and the screens inside Historic Mission Control representing milestones of the Apollo 11 mission.
- He can speak to the restoration being done inside the Historic Mission Control. Illuminated flight control consoles and wall displays will recreate an authentic Apollo-era control room configuration. When completed, the room will display a historically accurate look of the iconic control for future generations.
- Spana has more than 30 years of museum experience and has managed the development of the multi-exhibit complex Independence Plaza, the biggest project for the nonprofit.
John B. Charles, Space Center Houston, scientist in residence
- John B. Charles is Space Center Houston’s first scientist in residence, enhancing guest experience by augmenting the human health and performance aspects of the nonprofit’s exhibits, presentations and demonstrations.
- Charles served for 33 years at NASA, culminating as Chief Scientist, Human Research Program at Johnson Space Center. Previously, he was the associate manager, International Science, where he led NASA’s space life sciences planning for the joint US/Russian one-year mission on the International Space Station, including the Twins Study.
Eugene F. Kranz, NASA Career (1960-1994) Apollo Excerpts:
- Chief, Flight Control Division; flight director for the Apollo and Skylab programs; flight director for the first lunar landing (Apollo 11) in 1969; and flight director for the return of the Apollo 13 in 1973.
William “Bill” Reeves, NASA Career (1967-2001) Apollo Excerpts:
- Flight Controller, Flight Control Division, Lunar Module Systems Branch, Electrical and Instrumentation Systems Section (1967-1973)
Robert J. “Bob” Wren, NASA Career (1962-2000) Apollo Excerpts:
- Senior Structural Dynamics Engineer and Manager of Vibration and Acoustic Test Facility (1962-1968)
- Manager for Apollo S/C 2TV-1 CSM (Command and Service Module) Test Program (1968)
- Manager for Apollo LM-2 (Lunar Module) Drop Test Program (1968-1969)
- Manager for Structural Design (Saturn-Lifted and Shuttle-Lifted Space Station) (1969-1975)