When Judy Sang to JFK

Fred Astaire didn’t want to make movies with Ginger Rogers. Though Jackie denied it, Judy Garland often sang “Over the Rainbow” to JFK by phone. Paul Newman would taste-test movie-theater popcorn before buying a box to share with Joanne Woodward. Katharine Hepburn gave Spencer Tracy’s favorite hat to Henry Fonda on the set of On Golden Pond. You don’t spend more than 30 years creating documentaries about Hollywood royalty without unearthing some sparkling anecdotes. Joan Kramer and David Heeley — …

7 Moments Boomers Will Always Remember

Seven enduring memories from our yearlong ‘Boomer History’ project: Promised a T-shirt and a dollar for showing up, 5,000 fans greet the Beatles at New York’s JFK International Airport on Feb. 7, 1964. The following year, on Aug. 15, “arena rock” is born when a concert by the Fab Four draws more than 55,000 fans to Shea Stadium in Queens, N.Y. But nothing lasts forever. Preparing to release a solo album in April 1970, Paul McCartney says that the Beatles are finished. On March 7, 1965, …

This Week in Boomer History: ‘Thriller’ … Iran-Contra

Notable events from our shared experience Atari releases Pong, the first commercially successful video game, on Nov. 29, 1972. Crude by today’s standards, the virtual table tennis game launches an industry — one with annual revenue forecast to pass $100 billion in 2018.   After takeoff of Northwest Orient Flight 305 from Portland, Ore., to Seattle on Nov. 24, 1971, a man claiming to have a bomb demands a $200,000 ransom and four parachutes. The plane picks up the loot in …

This Week in Boomer History: ‘Man From U.N.C.L.E.’ … Warren Report

Notable events from our shared experience With a hand from James Bond creator Ian Fleming, The Man From U.N.C.L.E. premieres Sept. 22, 1964. Robert Vaughn stars as secret agent Napoleon Solo; David McCallum is Russian spy Illya Kuryakin. More TV premieres this week: The Munsters and Daniel Boone (1964), and Friends (1994). William Rehnquist is sworn in as chief justice of the United States on Sept. 26, 1986. He will preside over the impeachment trial of Bill Clinton in 1999 …

Remembering Jackie 20 Years After Her Death

There was something so special about Jackie Kennedy Onassis that 20 years later we still mourn her early death. On May 23, 1994, Onassis – one of our most celebrated first ladies – was buried in Arlington National Cemetery next to her first husband, President John Kennedy, their stillborn daughter and their son Patrick, who died two days after his birth in 1963. Jackie Onassis was just 64 when she died from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and she was as elegant and chic at that …

This Week in Boomer History: ‘Pulp Fiction’ … Marilyn Monroe … ‘What’s Going On’

Notable events from our shared experience Marvin Gaye‘s seminal album What’s Going On is released May 21, 1971. Influenced by letters his brother sent from Vietnam, Gaye writes the songs from the perspective of a Vietnam vet. Happy birthday, Mr. President. At Madison Square Garden in New York, Marilyn Monroe serenades President John Kennedy at a fundraiser on May 19, 1962. Monroe dies less than three months later at age 36. >> Sign up for the AARP Leisure Newsletter Ambassador Foy Kohler delivers a protest …