Hometown of first on moon ready to launch 50th celebration

July 06, 2019 - 9:54 am

WAPAKONETA, Ohio (AP) — Down to earth about most things, folks in this small western Ohio city are over the moon as they get ready to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the day the world watched their native son take a "giant leap for mankind."

Neil Armstrong helped put Wapakoneta (wah-PAH'-kuh-net-uh) on the map July 20, 1969, when he became the first human to walk on the moon. The late astronaut remains larger than life in the city 60 miles (96.56 kilometers) north of Dayton, where visitors are greeted by the space base-shaped top of the space museum named for him as they exit Interstate 75.

The city of fewer than 10,000 people has expanded its usual weekend moon festival to 10 days of commemorations and activities with thousands of visitors expected.

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