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Roswell UFO Festival celebrates alien life forms

“Al the Alien” casts a menacing glare as the Galactic Market at the Roswell Convention & Visitors Bureau opened for visitors during the 2010 Roswell UFO Festival. (Mark Wilson/Roswell Daily Record)

In 1947, a farmer from Roswell said a spaceship landed on his property. Locals speculated that the craft and any aliens aboard were “taken to Area 51.”

Since then, Roswell has been adorned with spacecraft and green beings with big black eyes, and it has played host to an annual UFO Festival filled with music, tasty treats, lively conversations about alien “abductions and probing,” and costume contests for the best-dressed alien.

Land early

The 2019 UFO Festival will kick off today and end Monday. Dress up in your best alien outfit or put on a unique “tin foil hat” – whichever you prefer – and land a spot at the Chaves County Courthouse lawn.

Mister wears an alien costume during the costume contest and parade at the Roswell UFO Festival in 2003. (Bill Moffitt/Roswell Daily Record)

There will be fun and games all day long with monster truck rides and a wonders on wheels mobile museum with interactive activities. The 38-foot RV features arts, culture, history and science exhibits.

A costume contest for both humans and animals will be held during the festival. Those who dress up as alien life forms may just win some cash.

Live entertainment by Nosotros, winner of 12 New Mexico music awards, will perform with its high-energy Latino rhythm throughout the day. As light turns to darkness, Drugstore Gypsies will rock the night.

Strange things may be seen at night

The Drugstore Gypsies, a Texas-based band, are one of the music industry’s rising bands, bringing its hard-hitting guitar licks to venues across the south.

Red Light Cameras will get you up dancing the night away with its grunge and soulful sounds.

Marching forward through the day, the 44th Army Band will perform a free concert at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at the Pearson Auditorium on the New Mexico Military Institute campus, near 1500 Main Street, with sounds that celebrate the Fourth of July.

The philanthropic group Dewback Ridge Garrison of the 501st Legion will stroll around the festival dressed as “Star Wars” characters.

A parade featuring lights and extraterrestrial life forms will take place at dark.

Whether you believe in UFOs or not, the conspiracy theory that began 72 years ago in Roswell with an alleged sighting of alien life has set the stage for a festival celebrating all that is Roswell.

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