Apollo 11 Moon landing celebrated with new LEGO set

That's one small step for man, one giant (LEGO) set for mankind.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing, LEGO has partnered with NASA to create the LEGO Creator Expert NASA Apollo 11 Lunar Lander.

In addition to the near 1,100-piece set (1,087 in total), LEGO also unveiled seven new LEGO CITYMars Exploration sets, which are inspired by NASA’s recently announced plans to return to the Moon as part of its Artemis program.

(Credit: Lego)

(Credit: Lego)

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"NASA and LEGO have long history of collaborating together, so assisting LEGO with authenticity on an Apollo 11 set that celebrates the 50th anniversary of that first astronaut Moon landing mission was a perfect fit," NASA’s Associate Administrator for Communications Bettina Inclán said in an email to Fox News. "And with our Artemis program plans to send the first woman and next man to the Moon in the next five years, we want these types of educational collaborations to help inspire the next generation – the Artemis generation – of space explorers. First they can build with toys, then in the coming years, they can work with us to build the real thing!"

In Greek mythology, Apollo and Artemis were the twin children of Zeus and Leto.

“We have a deep understanding of the ways in which play can have lifelong impact, and we have been champions of the awe and wonder of space exploration through playful building for almost as long as the world’s celebration of the first moon landing,” said Michael McNally, senior director, brand relations, LEGO Systems, in a statement obtained by Fox News.

McNally continued: “There are countless stories of engineers, scientists, astronauts, and roboticists who point to their experiences with LEGO building as the reason they are engaged in their current careers. We hope that our ongoing commitment to space-themed play materials will inspire future generations to help us continue exploring.”

(Credit: LEGO)

(Credit: LEGO)

Citing a recent survey done by The Harris Poll, LEGO said there is an increased resurgence in interest for space exploration among children. Seventy-five percent of U.S. parents who have a child between the ages of 5 and 12 say their child is interested in space exploration.

That number jumps even higher in other countries, coming in at 79 percent for U.K. parents and an astonishing 93 percent for Chinese parents.

No LEGO set would be complete without all the details and this one is no different, capturing those "true to the Eagle lunar lander." It has separate ascent and descent stages. The descent stage includes a gold-colored landing pad and panel, opening camera, laser hatch and ladder, while the ascent stage has a detailed interior.

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It's also possible to recreate the iconic first steps on the Moon, as the set features two mini astronauts, fully decked out in spacesuits, craters, Moon footprints and a U.S. flag. The set also includes an Apollo 11 Lunar Lander nameplate for display purposes.

(Credit: LEGO)

(Credit: LEGO)

The Lunar lander set is priced at $99.99 and will be sold only at LEGO Stores and shop.LEGO.com starting June 1.

The Danish toy maker also said that it will work to increase awareness in space exploration, offering weekly events in its stores focusing on Mars exploration throughout July. For those interested, you can visit your nearest LEGO store or www.LEGO.com/stores for more details.

NASA's Apollo 11 mission made history on July 20, 1969, when astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first people to walk on the Moon.

In June 2018, Aldrin told Fox News that in addition to returning to the Moon, he is pushing for humanity to expand its presence in space, making Mars habitable for mankind.

The 89-year-old former astronaut said there may be feasibility to ideas put forth by tech luminaries such as Elon Musk (a friend of Aldrin's), including detonating nuclear weapons as a way to 'terraform' the Red Planet or transforming Mars so it can support human life.

"Well, he’s not the only one who's pioneered ideas like that," Aldrin said during the interview. "He’s a little more flowery with things he does, but there's also Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos, the latter of whom I have great admiration for and the slow steady way he’s limiting himself to lunar industry that will then enable the same for thousands and millions of people."

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