Free “Weekend Walk on the Moon” event at Palmyra Cove Nature Park

Weekend-long event celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.

The Institute for Earth Observations at Palmyra Cove Nature Park will celebrate the historic Apollo 11 moon landing with a three-day event that will allow participants to “walk where the astronauts walked” through the institute’s newest virtual reality program and hear from the man who performed the Apollo 11 experiment with Astronaut Buzz Aldrin.

Freeholder Deputy Director Balvir Singh and Freeholder Daniel O’Connell will be on hand to open the event, which is open to the public, free of charge, and has hands-on activities for the whole family.

“The Institute for Earth Observations at Palmyra Cove has put together an amazing program,” said Freeholder Deputy Director Singh. “One that brings NASA to Burlington County and shows how STEM education can be fun.”

On Friday evening, special guest speaker (live from California) Professor Hildreth “Hal” Walker, Jr. will talk about his experience working with Astronaut Buzz Aldrin; Hal conducted the Lunar Laser Ranging Operations during the original Apollo 11 moon landing.

NJ Assemblywoman Carol A. Murphy, 7th Legislative District, will be on hand to recognize Professor Walker’s historic work and present him with a resolution from the state.

A NASA Solar System Ambassador, Frank O’Brien, will speak about “The Epic Voyage of Apollo 11” as well as NASA events, later that same evening. There will also be opportunities for participants to engage in virtual and augmented reality experiences at the Innovation Lab, and Moon and Earth Visualizations throughout the Environmental STEM Center (ESC, formerly the Environmental Discovery Center).

Indoor and outdoor activities are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday. Inside the Environmental STEM Center, participants can watch Starlab Planetarium shows, compete in NASA STEM Challenges and a Moon Quest Map Game, and build rockets as part of the hands-on space activities. Outdoors, there will be “GLOBE on the Moon” activities and solar viewing with sun scopes.

Participants can collect “Mission Accomplished” stickers for completing all activities offered and be entered in a drawing for a free membership to Palmyra Cove Environmental Education Foundation, the organization that supports activities at Palmyra Cove Nature Park/Institute for Earth Observations.

“We’re proud to be celebrating this historical event with help from our friends and colleagues from NASA,” Palmyra Cove Nature Park/Institute for Earth Observations Executive Director John Moore said. “But we’re also proud to be able to offer visitors a firsthand look at how these experiments on the Moon were conducted, thanks to a scientifically accurate, virtual reality program developed right here at the Institute for Earth Observations.”

The program will be held on Friday July 19, from 7 to 9 p.m., on Saturday July 20, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and on Sunday July 21, from 12 to 4 p.m.

Weekend Walk on the Moon Schedule:

Friday, July 19 (7 to 9 p.m.)

7:00-7:10 p.m.  Opening (Freeholders, Palmyra Cove Nature Park/Institute for Earth Observations Exec. Director)

7:10-7:20 p.m.  Presentation by Assemblywoman Carol A. Murphy to Professor Hal Walker

7:20-7:50 p.m.  Guest Speaker: Professor Hal Walker

7:50-8:00 p.m. break

8:00-8:30 p.m. Guest Speaker:  NASA Solar System Ambassador Frank O’Brien

8:30-9:00 p.m. Stations Open:

Moon and Earth Visualizations throughout the Environmental STEM Center

Virtual and Augmented Reality Experiences at the Innovation Lab

Saturday, July 20 (8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.) and Sunday, July 21 (12 to 4 p.m.)

Stations Open:

Moon and Earth Visualizations throughout the Environmental STEM Center

Virtual and Augmented Reality Experiences at the Innovation Lab

Starlab Planetarium Shows

NASA STEM Challenges

Hands-on Space Activities (e.g., building rockets)

Outdoor “GLOBE on the Moon” Activities

Moon Quest Map Game

Outdoor Solar Viewing with Sun Scopes