June 28, 2000

Alien Days Coming To Roswell

The Associated Press
    ROSWELL, N.M.   —   Little Green Men are coming to Roswell. So is a Star Trek alien. So are the Roswell Ride and the Sinking Titanic Slide.
    Welcome to Roswell's annual UFO Encounter, which begins Friday and runs through Tuesday.
    Some 28,000 to 30,000 people are expected to attend.

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    The annual festival stems from a mysterious crash northwest of Roswell in 1947. The Army initially said it was a UFO crash, but quickly backed off that report. The Pentagon has since said it was a top-secret balloon crash, but UFO enthusiasts never bought that story, giving rise to what has become known as the Roswell Incident.
    Among those expected to be on hand for this year's UFO Encounter: Tim Russ, who plays Tuvok on the television show "Star Trek: Voyager."
    Russ is to sign autographs Saturday afternoon, perform in concert with Neil Norman and the Cosmic Orchestra that evening, and sign more autographs and answer questions at a Sunday morning breakfast. Other science fiction stars also will sign autographs over the weekend.
    Musicians scheduled include Little Green Men, a "alien rock" band from Dallas.
    There also will be a performance by Howie Nave, billed as "the alien comic," on Sunday, said the chairwoman of the UFO committee, Stacey Wolkwitz.
    UFO-related lectures will be presented throughout the festival, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration will run a $33,000 exhibit at the Roswell Convention Center from Saturday through Tuesday.
    Visitors also can attend a performance Thursday of "Roswell, The Musical," based on the alleged UFO crash.
    A carnival and amusement rides are planned at Pioneer Plaza from Saturday through Tuesday. Entertainment at the plaza will include a virtual reality theater called "The Roswell Ride" as well as a "Sinking Titanic Slide."
    Saturday's events include a 10 a.m. alien costume contest at the Roswell Museum and Art Center and a 1 p.m. UFO parade downtown with floats, classic cars and roller-skating aliens.
    The Fourth of July on Tuesday takes on a traditional note with an old-fashioned barbecue at noon on Pioneer Plaza. Games and races will be held along with the barbecue.