NASA towers to fall
NASA hopes to begin destroying two iconic servicing towers of launch pad 39B at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral on Jan. 13. NASA had used the towers for 53 space shuttle missions over 20 years beginning in 1986. The agency has not revealed its plans for future use of the historic pad.
Religious Freedom Day
On Jan. 16, 1786, Baptists, Presbyterians, Deists, and others joined together in Virginia to pass the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom, penned by Thomas Jefferson to protect liberty of conscience and First Amendment rights. Now Jan. 16 marks the annual Religious Freedom Day in the United States.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day
First observed as a federal holiday in 1986, Jan. 19 will mark the 26th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day in honor of the slain civil rights leader. Outside the United States, Toronto and Hiroshima, Japan, also observe the holiday with public events.
Wikipedia turns 10
The user-written online encyclopedia Wikipedia turns 10 on Jan. 15. The website currently boasts 3.3 million English entries, a multilingual version, and a new joint venture with the British Museum.
Independent film festival opens
The prestigious Sundance Film Festival opens Jan. 20 in Utah, and this year's event features founder Robert Redford's new film, The Conspirator, about the Lincoln assassination. Each year, Sundance highlights new independent films.
Roe v. Wade anniversary
On Jan. 22, 1973, the Supreme Court mandated legal abortion throughout the United States, overturning abortion laws in many states and setting off a decades-long legal, political, and cultural struggle.