The Smithsonian is using crowdfunding site Kickstarter to raise funds for a display of the spacesuit worn for the moon landing in 1969.
Crowdfunding has offered some wonderful investment opportunities, as well as the chance to assist a worthy cause with a donation.
The Smithsonian might be considered a worthy cause.
The Smithsonian has the original spacesuit worn by Neil Armstrong when he stepped on the moon in 1969. The suit is not currently on display; it is kind of beat up, actually.
But the national museum wants to display the suit on July 20, 2019 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, and has started a campaign on the crowdfunding site Kickstarter (named Reboot the Suit) to raise the funds necessary to clean up the suit.
Currently, the Smithsonian displays replicas of those worn by the mission by Armstrong and fellow space traveler Buzz Aldrin, who became the second person to walk on the moon.
The Kickstarter campaign includes a video explaining why the Smithsonian is trying to raise funds.
“The complete suits are not on display; they are not even in this building,’’ says astronomer and science blogger Phil Plait. “The years have taken their toll on Neil’s suit, but now, the technology exists to bring it back to its former glory, digitize it and put it on exhibit.”
“It’s a national treasure,’’ said National Air and Space Museum objects conservator Lisa Young. “If we don’t take time to preserve it, and look at it, and make sure it’s displayed correctly, we will not have it forever in the collection.”
The Smithsonian gets federal funding, but that only covers a portion of the museum’s operating budgets and core functions. The rest of the necessary funds come from contributions and any revenue generated by the museums and other attractions on the Smithsonian Mall in Washington, D.C. The museums themselves are free to the public, but there are souvenir goods that can be purchased.
The Kickstarter campaign is attempting to raise $500,000 through Aug. 20 to do the necessary work on the suit.
In October, the Smithsonian started a fundraising campaign to arise $1.5 billion to strengthen its member institutions. The Smithsonian is planning to build the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and has renovation plans for several other museums.
Kent McDill is a staff writer for Millionaire Corner. McDill spent 30 years as a sports writer, working for United Press International and the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. From 1988-1999, he covered the Chicago Bulls for the Daily Herald, traveling with them every day through the nine-month season. He also covered the Bulls for UPI from 1985-88, and currently covers the team for www.nba.com. He has written two books on the Bulls, including the new title “100 Things Bulls Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die’, published by Triumph Books. In August 2013, his new book “100 Things Bears Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die” gets published.
In 2008, he resigned from the Herald and became a freelance writer. The Herald hired him to write business features and speeches for the Daily Herald Business Conferences and Awards presentations.
McDill also writes a monthly parenting column for the Herald’s Suburban Parent magazine.
McDill is the father of four children, and an active fan of soccer, Jimmy Buffett and all things Disney.