History is full of crucial moments (and cool inventions) whose significance can sometimes be impossible to fully grasp in the moment, but that doesn't stop people from trying through war reenactments, nonfiction entertainment, and more. Below are some moments from recent history many people want to relive (or experience for the first time).
MAN SETS FOOT ON THE MOON, 1969
In a survey asking 2,000 Americans what they'd pay to relive certain moments, witnessing the world's first manned mission to the moon topped the list for historic moments at $39,334, second only to witnessing the birth of one's first child ($100,622). Unfortunately, the Apollo 11 launch site in Cape Canaveral is now an Air Force outpost with no visitor facilities, so interested parties can instead see moon rocks and hear the story of America's moon landing recounted at the nearby Kennedy Space Center.
THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON, 1963
The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom flooded the National Mall in Washington, DC, with more than 200,000 supporters on August 28, 1963 and spawned Martin Luther King, Jr.'s most famous moment of oratory. The words of his "I Have a Dream" speech are now engraved on the spot he spoke in front of the Lincoln Memorial. Even if King's life came to a tragic end, the rally remains a watershed moment of hope in American history — one we'd pay approximately $28,676 to relive.
MARK ZUCKERBERG LAUNCHES FACEBOOK, 2004
PREMIERE OF STAR WARS, 1977
When it comes to pop culture events, the release of the first film transporting audiences to "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away" was worth more to re-experience than any other — $11,757, to be precise. Star Wars was considered a potential dud upon its release on Memorial Day weekend in 1977, but the film's success changed how movies were released and marketed, with nationwide releases replacing limited runs in select cities by the time of Empire Strikes Back. Today, there are plenty of places to get your Star Wars fix around the world, in addition to rewatching the movies and patiently waiting for the follow-up films.
FALL OF THE BERLIN WALL, 1989
Respondents said they would pay an average of $11,613 to be there when the Berlin Wall fell on November 9, 1989, precipitating the formal reunification of Germany in '90 and the demise of the Soviet Union in '91. The euphoric occasion lasted for several weeks with participants throwing chocolates in guards' faces and chipping away pieces of the wall as souvenirs.
For musical events, those surveyed would pay most ($11,110) to re-experience Woodstock, the "three days of peace and music" attended by more than 400,000 at the cost of just $6.50 per ticket, or $18 for all three days in advance and $24 at the gate — that is, until the fences were torn down and it was declared a free event on the first day. The festival that epitomized our romantic conception of the 1960s counterculture is preserved at its original site by the Museum at Bethel Woods, offering short films, interactive exhibits, and even intimate concerts designed to convey the history and "key ideals" of the 1960s.
THE BEATLES' FIRST WORLD TOUR, 1964
After Woodstock, the moment in musical history we'd pay most ($10,564) to relive was the Fab Four's first-ever world tour, which brought the Liverpool quartet to America for the first time. Many of the venues they played, like the Washington Coliseum and Carnegie Hall, still host events today, albeit with significantly improved sound systems since the Beatles' days.
A NIGHT OUT WITH THE RAT PACK
Survey respondents said they'd pay $7,823 to enjoy a night out with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Joey Bishop, and other members of the Rat Pack. Though Vegas has changed considerably since, fans can still find remnants of Sinatra's old haunts at Caesars Palace or the Golden Steer Steakhouse, among others.
PRINCESS DIANA'S WEDDING, 1981
Survey respondents said they would pay $7,103 to go back and attend the wedding of Lady Diana Spencer to Prince Charles of Wales, which seems like a bargain weighed against the $110 million adjusted for inflation they spent putting it together. The festivities included a ceremony at St. Paul's Cathedral in London, a five-foot 225-pound wedding cake, and a dress train 25 feet long.
ON-SET FOR THE FRIENDS FINALE, 2004
MARILYN MONROE SINGING "HAPPY BIRTHDAY MR. PRESIDENT," 1962
ALI VS. FRAZIER, 1975
The "Thrilla in Manila" was an easy winner for sporting events. Survey respondents said they'd pay $5,114 to see this third and final boxing match for title of heavyweight champion between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier, watched by a record global TV audience estimated at 300 million at the time — with many more listening intently on the radio. Today, enthusiasts can re-watch the fight free online or visit the Araneta Coliseum in Cubao where the fight took place.
V-E DAY, 1945
One of the most celebratory occasions of the past 75 years the survey's respondents (or perhaps its architects) forgot to mention was the resolution of World War II in Europe on May 8, 1945. Nazi Germany's final surrender terms were signed in Berlin, but far more famous are the celebrations that erupted for the occasion, with millions rejoicing in the streets.