Celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the Moon Landing: Apollo’s Chariot

By Posted on 4 Comments 2 min read 732 views
Not the emblem for the 1969 mission, but shows the chariot horses/Image courtesy of NASA
Not the mission emblem for the first landing on the moon, but the mission that didn't make it to the moon. This is the only Apollo mission emblem to show the chariot horses/Image courtesy of NASA

When you watch the miniseries “From the Earth to the Moon,” you’ll see that each episode is introduced by show producer Tom Hanks.

He delivers the segments while walking through a massive sculpture of fierce horses.

The missions to the moon were named for Apollo, who ancient Greeks say drove a chariot that pulled the sun across the sky.

The backdrop to the set where Hanks delivers his episode introductions is a  foam sculpture of Apollo and the steeds pulling his chariot.

You can click here for a full look at the compelling 18-foot tall sculpture created by Michelle Millay and her team of sculptors.

Besides renting or pulling out your copy of “From the Earth to the Moon,” there are all sorts of places and ways to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing, Apollo 11.  

On the Internet

You can watch Hollywood-restored NASA video of the historic moonwalks and see everything better than we could when we watched it all live back in the day.

FWIW, the NASA website has all sorts of celebratory material including the real-time playback of the NASA recordings of the entire mission.

On TV Monday

TCM is running an all day series of space and moon oriented movies. The TCM schedule for the 40th anniversary of the moon landing is here.

Channel Guide Magazine has a comprehensive TV celebration listing for  moon landing anniversary programming.

Channel Guide concentrates on the Discovery networks  and the National Geographic channel. The times listed are EDT, so adjust your time differences accordingly.

And, when you think about it, each episode of “From the Earth to the Moon” is about Apollo’s “chariot” and what powered it. The rockets, the horses.

If you don’t see the connection, check out this myth about Phaeton, Apollo’s son taking his father’s chariot out for the day.

PS – We miss you, Walter. We wish you were still here for the celebrations. But, in a way, we know that you didn’t miss out on any of the fun.  But we still miss you. And that’s the way it is.

CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite gets a feel for moonwalking in the reduced gravity simulator in 1968/Courtesy NASA and probably CBS News, too.
CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite gets a feel for moonwalking in the reduced gravity simulator in 1968/Courtesy NASA and probably CBS News, too.

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  • Fantastic article! I’ve never seen that picture of Walter Cronkite and didn’t know he did that much reduced gravity sim “research”. “From the Earth to the Moon” is one of my absolute favorites.

    The Apollo XIII logo is fabulous!

    I grew up during the 1960’s and between the Apollo program and Star Trek, I became a scientist.


    • rhond7
      July 23, 2009

      Wow! Thanks for stopping by. I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I don’t know how long Walter stayed in the gravity sim rig (that mix of discomfort and delight on his face is priceless), but I know that he would have jumped at the chance to ride a rocket into space.

      Ya know, people who think that the space program is a waste of money forget about how many young scientists the launches helped inspire. Like you. 🙂 Kudos to you, plus a big “thank you” for all your hard work in the pursuit of science.

  • Abel
    September 11, 2011

    I loved the documentary – From the Earth to the Moon.
    The sculpture of Apollo and the chariot and the horses’ is really powerful.
    I would love to have a reproduction picture of it or a scale model.
    Please do contact me.

    • Rhonda Lane
      September 11, 2011

      Ya know, Abel, I’d like a scale model of that sculpture, too. It was incredible. It would also work as a room divider, IMO, where we could walk through it like Tom Hanks. Anyway, thanks for stopping by and saying “hello.”