Apollo 50th anniversary logo, which includes and image of the Moon and Mars.

Join us for a year-long celebration as we look back at the legacy of our first small steps on the Moon and look forward to the next giant leap.  

The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum will help lead a national celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo missions including the first Moon landing, which occurred on July 20, 1969. With our renowned collection and expertise, we hope to spark a national conversation about the past, present, and future of innovation and exploration.

Our year-long programming kicks off this fall with events honoring the Apollo missions and our future in space. Learn more about what’s in store and come back for regular updates.

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Press: Visit our newsroom for the latest release. Or email Nick Partridge or Alison Mitchell.


56 years ago, President Kennedy rallied the nation behind our lunar quest with his iconic "We Choose to Go to the Moon" speech at Rice University.

Together We Choose

On September 12, 1962, President John F. Kennedy rallied the nation behind our lunar quest with his iconic "We Choose to Go to the Moon" speech at Rice University. This moment helped usher in the space age as we now know it. As we look back at our past, and ahead to our next great leap, the National Air and Space Museum gathered aerospace ground breakers--scientists, historians, and astronauts from the Apollo-era to today's commercial crew--to commemorate this historic call to action.

Saturn 5 rocket launching the Apollo 11 crew into space and to the moon

Happening Now | Destination Moon Traveling Exhibition:

Featuring the Apollo 11 Command Module Columbia, this exhibition is on a two-year national tour. Next stops include Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh followed by The Museum of Flight in Seattle. Visit the Exhibit>

October 11, 2018 | Commemorative Coin:

The U.S. Mint will unveil the winning design of their commemorative Apollo 11 coin at the Museum on the launch anniversary of Apollo 7. Learn About the Coin>

December 7, 2018 | Apollo Dialogues Workshop:

Intended for researchers, writers, and scholars, this workshop, in partnership with NASA, will analyze the current and future state of scholarship within the field.

December 11, 2018 | The Spirit of Apollo:

This special night at Washington National Cathedral will celebrate the iconic Apollo 8 Christmas Eve broadcast from space with astronaut Jim Lovell and other special guests. See the Event> 

July 2019 | Armstrong Spacesuit:

After thousands of Kickstarter donations to conserve Neil Armstrong’s Apollo 11 spacesuit, this iconic artifact will go back on display for the first time in 13 years.  

July 16-20, 2019 | Celebration on the National Mall:

We will mark the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission with a five-day celebration centered on the National Mall in Washington, DC. More details to come.

Support for Apollo 50 programming is generously provided by
With additional support from

The Apollo Story

Race to Space

Early Steps

Life in Space


Moon Landing

Apollo Objects

“It was so exciting and meaningful that so many of us saw it happen together.”  


We want you to hear your memories of Apollo and beyond. Share your spaceflight story online or on social using #Apollo50.