International UFO Day. This day excites me. Perhaps its because I’m a product of my generation but (I’m going to date myself here) I was lucky enough to grow up with Unsolved Mysteries where episodes of alien abductions intrigued me. I then fell in love with X-Files, where Fox Mulder helped shape my malleable mind and I sure did believe that there had to be more, and that the ‘truth’ was in fact ‘out there’.
I went on to enjoy teen shows like Roswell, which romanticized aliens and made them not weird and green but young, attractive and having cool powers. Say what you will and judge away but that show introduced us to quality stars like Colin Hanks and no one can change my mind. Swoon.
The alien resurgence didn’t stop there. From movies, to clothes, to jewellery, (alien head pendant anyone?) aliens and UFO’s and the questioning of interplanetary life was a big part of pop culture.
Why the obsession with aliens anyway? How did this start?
While the idea behind extraterrestrial life dates back to ancient scholars like Nicholas of Cusa in the 15th century, most people when asked about ‘aliens’ and their origins (deep space notwithstanding) will refer to Roswell or Area 51. The former being the town in which infamous incident occurred which helped spawn a worldwide obsession with alien beings and U.F.O’s (unidentified flying objects). And the latter being the infamous government facility that has been the center of countless conspiracy theories.
How it started
In June 1947 a pilot flying his plane spotted what he stated were ‘objects’ flying in the sky in a specific formation. According to him “they flew in unison and were bright with a blueish glow.” This story spread and was picked up by newspapers and the idea of ‘flying saucer’ was born.
Just 2 weeks later, a rancher found the wreckage of some sort on his farm. He contacted the local sheriff who in turn handed the evidence over to the commanding officer of the Roswell Army Air Field. The commander released a statement telling the public that a ‘flying saucer’ had indeed been recovered.
This statement was quickly recanted by the army, stating that the ‘flying saucer’ was no more than a weather balloon. This change in statement still has UFO believers questioning whether this was an elaborate cover up.
More than 70 years after this incident, Roswell, New Mexico to this day, is one of the most well known hubs where alien believing enthusiasts flock. The town of Roswell has embraced their town’s legacy and they are home to numerous alien themed museums, businesses, and restaurants.
It’s where those interested in Ufology (the investigation of UFO’s) can come together and interact with like minded people who believe that there is more out there.
How to Celebrate International UFO Day
The sky is the limit!
Hunker down with some alien popcorn mix (see recipe below) and watch an alien themed movie! Check out this directory here for a comprehensive list of alien moves of all years and genres. Kid friendly features include Lilo & Stitch, Monsters VS Aliens and if E.T is just a touch too dark for your littles, then try a lighter (less well known but amazing) option, Mac & Me.
Going to date myself here again but this is an 80’s gem that includes one of the cutest aliens ever! And a dance off in a McDonald’s restaurant complete with Ronald McDonald. Nostalgic gold.
Celebrate with food!
Want a snack to go with those awesome-sauce movies? How about some alien pretzels!
Here is what you need:
Check out the picture gallery for a visual how-to!
Serve everyone their own individual snacks in Lil Helper’s alien themed bite bags!
Make Some UFO Day Crafts
One of the simplest activities is alien balloons! Balloons are great for any occasion and my 2 kiddos loves playing with them.
All you need is:
- Balloons (green, purple, or grey are perfect but aliens can be any colour your imagination chooses!)
- Black or contrasting construction paper and
- Permanent marker and
- Scotch tape
Cut out construction paper eyes and attach with tape. Use marker to draw on a mouth.
Make a game of it by challenging your kids to keep their alien up in the air for as long as they can without ‘landing’.
So Happy International UFO Day folks! I’ll be wearing my tinfoil hat, watching X-Files while I happily eat snacks out of my Empowered Extraterrestrials bite bags. How will YOU celebrate this special day?
About the Author
Heather is a STAHWM who lives in St. John’s NL. where she’s raising two humans, two dogs, a cat and a fish. In between chasing her hooligans and waiting for her Hogwarts letter, she enjoys knitting, crocheting and campy 80’s horror flicks.