The Apollo 11 50th Anniversary
Open Days at Parkes

20 - 21 July 2019

It was one giant leap for mankind, and it was taken at 12.56 PM Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) on Monday, 21 July 1969. Six hundred million people, one sixth of mankind at the time, watched Neil Armstrong's first steps on the Moon. Three tracking stations were receiving the signals simultaneously. They were CSIRO's Parkes Radio Telescope, the Honeysuckle Creek tracking station outside Canberra, and NASA's Goldstone station in California. The signals were relayed to Mission Control at Houston. During the first few minutes of the broadcast, NASA alternated between the signals from its two stations at Goldstone and Honeysuckle Creek, searching for the best quality images. When they switched to the Parkes pictures, they were of such superior quality, that NASA remained with the Parkes TV pictures for the remainder of the 2 1/2-hour telecast.

To commemorate this historic event, the CSIRO Parkes Observatory will be holding Open Days on the anniversary weekend of 20-21 July 2019. The public is invited to visit the Observatory and enjoy the various activities being planned. These include:

  • Tours of the telescope
  • Talks by special guest speakers and astronomers
  • Daytime astronomy viewings of the brightest stars, planets and Sun by the members of the Central West Astronomical Society
  • The screening of the film, The DISH, on the Saturday night, in the field adjacent to the telescope (weather permitting) - preliminary
  • Plus much more

All are welcome to attend, with all activities being free of charge.

We'll be posting more information as we get closer, so keep checking this page as more exciting activites are announced. It will be an unforgettable experience for all the family.

So, mark your calendars and we'll see you, then.

Comments and Enquiries:
Email: CSIRO Parkes Observatory Visitors Centre
Tel: (02) 6861-1777