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The following appeared May 26, 2009 in the

Boynton Beach exhibit to chronicle Apollo 11 mission.

By Erika Pesantes
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Posted May 26, 2009

 Travel to the moon and back in time to 1969 — and stay in Boynton Beach.

   The Boynton Beach City Library and the Schoolhouse Children's Museum plan to host the "Living by the Launch" exhibit in honor of the 40th anniversary of Apollo 11, the first manned mission to land on the moon.

   The exhibit will open June 2 and will show off space objects from NASA including rocket, space shuttle and sky lab models and moon rocks, which would only be on loan for a few days and require extra security. Those dates are not yet set.

   The city library will also show space-themed movies such as The Astronaut Farmer and Zathura: A Space Adventure and could offer a talk from a local astronaut.

   Local residents have contributed Apollo 11-era newspaper clippings and other memorabilia for the exhibit, but the biggest offering came from Rick Newman, a Boca Raton space artifact collector who claims to have the largest private collection in the world.

   "This is really going to have the 'wow' factor," said library archivist Janet Devries, who is organizing the exhibit. "We'll have a stellar summer."

   Visitors will see Newman's collection of space suits, including a replica of Neil Armstrong's suit during Apollo 11 as well as authentic NASA technician coveralls.

   Newman, who has been into science since he was 10 years old, has space gadgets and robots from his collections strewn throughout his home that is "bursting at the seams," he said. He gets relief when he loans out his collectibles to schools and museums.

   "I've always personally been very involved and interested in the space program. I've followed it pretty much my whole life," Newman, 53, said. "I do what I do because it was an inspiration for me."

   Newman hopes to encourage kids to pursue careers in space and robotics, he said.

   The exhibit runs through Aug. 29, 2009.

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