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7/15/2009
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From Earth To The Moon: Apollo 11 Turns 40

NASA is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the first manned mission to the moon.

NASA has begun commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing with a series of live and online events as next week marks the fourth decade since Neil Armstrong became the first human to set foot on the lunar surface.

Among other things, NASA has created a special Web page to mark the Apollo 11 mission, which was viewed live by millions around the world in 1969. The mission culminated when Armstrong stepped onto the moon from the lunar lander and uttered the famous words, "One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind."

Armstrong later confided that, despite the apparent smoothness of the landing, "there were just a thousand things to worry about."

The site features an area where viewers can post photos of themselves bearing NASA's official "Apollo 40 Years" logo. They can also watch interactive, multimedia presentations about the moon shot and hear President John F. Kennedy's historic speech in which he set a moon landing as a national priority.

On Thursday, NASA will host an Apollo 11 anniversary symposium at its headquarters in Washington, D.C.

NASA, meanwhile, is attempting to locate the original tapes on which the Apollo 11 flight was recorded. The agency believes they may be at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, where they may have been sent after temporary storage at the National Archives in D.C.

"Despite the challenges of the search, NASA does not consider the tapes to be lost," said NASA, in an official statement on its Web site.

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