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‘One giant leap’: How to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing around Boston

Apollo 11 exhibit in the lobby of Draper Labs in Cambridge. Organizations around Boston are commemorating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing.
Apollo 11 exhibit in the lobby of Draper Labs in Cambridge. Organizations around Boston are commemorating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing.(David L Ryan/Globe Staff)

These events are out of this world

July 20 marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, which will be marked with a variety of events around Boston. Relive (or explore for the first time) the remarkable achievement, the space race and technological revolution that led the way, or just revel in the wonders of space exploration.

We Hack the Moon: An exhibit at Draper features an enormous spherical sculpture of the moon. On Saturday, the sculpture will illuminate at the very moment that Neil Armstrong first set foot on the moon. The exhibit also includes a simulator of the lunar landing experience and delves into the engineering breakthroughs that propelled astronauts onto the lunar surface. Through Oct. 5. Visit wehackthemoon.com/events for details. Draper, 555 Technology Square, Cambridge

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JFK Space Fest 2019: The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum hosts a full day of activities on Saturday, with talks by NASA speakers, engineers, and scientists, an exhibit on how spacesuits protect astronauts, and even build-your-own-rocket activities. The Space Fest takes place from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and visitors 17 and under will be admitted free. For all others, regular or discounted admission applies. On Tuesday, the library will “launch” an augmented reality replica of the Saturn V rocket carrying Apollo 11 over Dorchester Bay billed as an “epic retelling and recreation of the Apollo 11 mission and its connection to President John F. Kennedy.” Can’t make it in person? Download the JFK Moonshot app on Apple or Google Play to experience the launch remotely. JFK Library, Columbia Point, Boston

Symphonic Space Odyssey: 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing: On Wednesday, the Boston Landmark Orchestra will perform pieces inspired by the heavens to mark the anniversary. Among them: “Thus Spake Zarathustra,” by Richard Strauss, familiar as the opening score to Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey,” and the theme to Steven Spielberg’s “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” by John Williams. The concert, at the Esplanade Hatch Shell, begins at 7 p.m. Visit landmarksorchestra.org for details. Rain date is Thursday. Hatch Shell, Esplanade, Boston

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Moon Landing 50th: One Giant Anniversary: The Museum of Science boasts a whole roster of activities on Friday and Saturday, covering everything from the future of spacesuits to the technology of feeding people in space. On Saturday, visitors can watch a live launch from Kazakhstan of three astronauts who are headed to the International Space Station for a six-month mission. Visit mos.org for details. Museum of Science, 1 Science Park, Boston

Moon Landing 50th Anniversary: On Thursday, the McAuliffe Center at Framingham State University hosts an open house to celebrate the moon milestone, with family-oriented activities, planetarium shows, and a 6 p.m. screening of a new film about the Apollo 11 landing. Things get started at 2:30 p.m. Visit moon-landing.org and click on “event schedule” for more information.

Christa McAuliffe Center, 100 State St., Framingham

Small Steps, Giant Leaps: Apollo 11 at 50: Small Steps, Giant Leaps, at Harvard’s Houghton Library, looks at centuries of mathematical thought and discovery, each of them a building block in our understanding of the cosmos. See works by Copernicus and Galileo, as well as artifacts from the Apollo 11 mission. A tour of the exhibit is scheduled for Saturday from 4:30-5:15 p.m., followed by a screening of “The Right Stuff” at the Harvard Film Archive at 5:30 p.m. For details, visit library.harvard.edu.

Edison and Newman Room, Houghton Library, Harvard Yard

Compiled by Hayley Kaufman/Globe staff


Hayley Kaufman can be reached at hayley.kaufman@globe.com