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Way out there

Space scientists have serious fun. On April 1, 2002, NASA announced that the Hubble Space Telescope had discovered that the moon really is made of green cheese.

NASA claimed it had found an expiration date for when the cheese might “go bad.” The report said, “To be cautious, we should completely devour the moon by tomorrow.”

On April Fools’ Day in 2007, NASA announced that Americans had defeated the Russians in the first space Quidditch match. It claimed astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria caught the Golden Snitch.

Golden oldies

Some April Fools’ jokes come back year after year. Fake news stories about flying saucers, dinosaurs walking the Earth today, and creatures such as the Loch Ness Monster and dragons are big favorites.

Serious TV cracking jokes

The British Broadcasting Corp., or BBC, produces many serious news shows, nature shows and dramas. It is also known for its April Fools’ jokes.

In 1957, the BBC played one of the most famous April Fools’ jokes of all time. The BBC news carried a story about the great spaghetti crop in Switzerland that year. It showed farmers pulling spaghetti noodles from trees. Reporters said farmers had developed plants that would produce noodles that were all the same length.

Still having fun

In 1965, the BBC reported someone had invented Smellovision, or TV sets that filled the house with smells from the shows.

In 2008, the BBC claimed it had discovered a colony of flying penguins.

Last year on April Fools’ Day, BBC announcers claimed the Earth had exploded. They said the reporter was reporting from the afterlife. They did not explain how everyone on Earth and all the TVs had survived.

For April Fools’ Day in 2008, NASA reported a “troubling request” by a robot at the International Space Station. NASA claimed the robot was demanding that people call it “Dextre the Magnificent.” NASA said the robot “thanked humans for creating it and promised a glorious future where humans would retain (or keep) an important role in the new robot order.”

Playing With the News