Landmark Independence Day Event Celebrates NASA and Apollo
July 18, 2019
Fifty years after man first set foot on the Moon,
NASA’s Johnson Space Center was the featured guest at Houston’s signature
Independence Day event, Freedom Over Texas. Celebrating many slices of
Americana, the festival marked the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing
and looked ahead to the new frontiers of space exploration, bringing the Space
City experience to life for an estimated 50,000 attendees.
NASA’s presence wasn’t as large as, say, the Moon, but in addition to a
14-foot inflatable version of that alien world, the center brought some of its most awe-inspiring
mock-ups and artifacts for display under a behemoth 30-foot by 120-foot tent.
Some high-impact visuals included the Destination Station mobile exhibit, Space
Exploration Vehicle rover, post-landing Orion recovery test article,
Robonaut, an Extravehicular Mobility Unit spacesuit and many more. Starport
supported with its own pop-up shop, selling space “merch” and keepsakes, and
numerous volunteers shared NASA’s inspirational story with the public.
In advance of live music performances by Jake Owen
and Kellie Pickler, as well as an astronomical fireworks show, Mayor Sylvester Turner presented Johnson
Director Mark Geyer with a key to the city before he, too, toured the NASA