Apollo 11 party in St. Charles

Celebrating one small step

To mark the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing the St. Charles County Parks Department is hosting a late-night retro moon party 

By Brett Auten

Jim Twellman will never forget it.

As a 10-year-old at a church picnic, Twellman recalled grown-ups and kids alike huddled around a black-and-white television that was drug outside so they could watch the Apollo 11 spaceflight that landed two men on the moon.

“It’s an emotion that has stuck with me and is connected with history,” Twellman said. “It was a huge sense of national accomplishment at the time.”

And now you can get a taste of that feeling.

In honor of the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing, the St. Charles County Parks Department is hosting a late-night retro moon party at the Astronomy Viewing Area in Broemmelsiek Park, located at 1615 Schwede Road in Wentzville. Adults and children are encouraged to dig out your favorite 60s attire and party like its 1969 from 8:30 p.m. to midnight, July 20.

Members of the Astronomical Society of Eastern Missouri, in which Twellman is the Executive Director, are sponsoring the program and will commemorate this historic event by showing guests images of the moon, Jupiter, Saturn and other constellations through high-powered telescopes. Iconic footage of the moon landing and the Apollo mission seen around the world will be shown on a big screen. Music from the 60s will be played throughout the night. The participant wearing the best 60s apparel will be awarded a prize by Astronomical Society of Eastern Missouri event judges.

“There will be a 14-inch telescope and plenty of other amateur scopes to look through,” Twellman said. “We hope to end the video footage at the same time the moon come up, that way you can have the moon for dessert.”

Registration is not required. For more information about the event, visit asemonline.org/st-charles-county-parks-events online. In case of inclement weather on the day of the program, check the rainout line at 636-707-0011 or visit stccparks.org for program updates.

“The Parks Department is excited to offer the community a chance to celebrate this historic achievement with a family friendly retro moon party at our unique Astronomy Viewing Area in Broemmelsiek Park in Wentzville,” Nancy Gomer, St. Charles County Parks Marketing Coordinator/PIO, said.

Apollo 11 was the spaceflight that landed the first two people on the moon. Commander Neil Armstrong and lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin, both American, landed the Apollo Lunar Module Eagle on July 20, 1969.

The United States’ Apollo 11 was the first crewed mission to land on the moon, on July 20, 1969. Commander Neil Armstrong and lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin, both American, landed the Apollo Lunar Module Eagle. There have been six crewed U.S. landings (between 1969 and 1972) and numerous uncrewed landings. To date, the United States is the only country to have successfully conducted crewed missions to the moon, with the last departing the lunar surface in December 1972.

The Astronomical Society of Eastern Missouri is an Astronomy club designed to put fun and passion into astronomy. It is based in St. Charles County and draws heavily from the St. Louis Metro area. Its 90 members range in ages from eight to 85 and the club has several public outreach and education programs, meetings and events. The Astronomical Society of Eastern Missouri offers Friday Night Open Houses at Broemmelsiek Park nearly every week of the year. For more information, visit www.asemonline.org.

CUTLINE: Community News file photos In honor of the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing, the St. Charles County Parks Department is hosting a late-night retro moon party at the Astronomy Viewing Area in Broemmelsiek Park, located at 1615 Schwede Road in Wentzville. Adults and children are encouraged to dig out your favorite 60s attire and party like its 1969 from 8:30 p.m. to midnight, July 20.