In a time beset by civil strife and international crises, President John F. Kennedy turned a nation’s eyes to the sky. He gave a nation hope with a simple mission: Put a man on the Moon.

“We choose to go to the Moon,” Kennedy said. “We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.”

Kennedy thundered those words from the podium which now sits in Destiny Theater here at Space Center Houston. The podium was donated to Space Center Houston by Rice University in Houston, where Kennedy delivered his speech imploring America to reach for the lunar surface on Sept. 12. 1962.

That spirit of hope and exploration continues to drive our deep space exploration as we reach for the next milestone in our human destiny.

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