The UFO Museum
As interest in the 1947 UFO Crash grew throughout the 1980s, Walter Haut (1922-2005), the former RAAF Information Officer who wrote the 1947 press release about the crashed saucer, and Glenn Dennis (1925-2004), the mortician who had been consulted by the RAAF about small coffins and preserving tissue, began focusing their energy on creating a museum devoted to UFO information and research.
In the early 1990s Haut and Dennis, looking for a home for the UFO Museum, enlisted Roswell realtor Max Littell (1916-2001) in the project. They incorporated as a non-profit educational organization in 1991 and in 1992 opened their first museum—mainly a collection of newspaper clippings—in one of the buildings later demolished to create PioneerPlaza. The new UFO Museum quickly established itself as an important force in UFO circles, and as Roswell’s first major tourist attraction.
In 1997 the Museum moved to its current, and much larger, location and almost immediately began planning for future expansion. At one point, a site several miles west of town was considered but local businesses objected strongly to losing their downtown tourist draw. The Museum decided to remain in the downtown area and acquired land at the site of the former Holsum Bakery (723 North Main Street). In spite of the 2007 groundbreaking for the “multi-million-dollar state-of-the-art” museum (Question: just what constitutes “state of the art” for a UFO museum?) funds are still being sought, so the museum will likely remain in its current location for a few more years, much to the relief of nearby businesses.
Today the International UFO Museum and Research Center in Roswell, housing the world’s premier research library on UFO and alien-related subjects, is the focal point for both serious researchers and popular UFO enthusiasts the world over. Would you like to chat with the daughter of Museum founder Walter Haut? She’s the current Museum Director, Julie Shuster.
The Roswell UFO Festival
Since 1996 the UFO Museum in Roswell, New Mexico or the Roswell Chamber of Commerce has sponsored an annual Roswell UFO Festival around the time of the Crash—usually the July 4th weekend. In 2007 the City of Roswell assumed sponsorship of the UFO Festival, which features everything from serious presentations about aliens and UFOs by researchers and authors to frivolous fun for a family vacation. The Fiftieth Anniversary UFO Festival in 1997 and the Sixtieth in 2007 have stirred up the most excitement so far, but celebrations typically include events such as UFO speakers, celebrity appearances, the Alien Chase, concerts, carnivals, trade shows, panel discussions of alien and extraterrestrial issues, food booths, air shows, costume contests, parades, film festivals, book signings, sports competitions, and lots of media attention, all great for fun vacations with the entire family. New Mexico’s four-day UFO Festival in Roswell brings out two types of UFO enthusiasts in abundance—those who devote serious study to questions about aliens, and those who think the whole thing is a hoot and the most fun to hit Roswell since the last cattle drive. For more information about all of the family fun visit www.UFOfestivalRoswell.com or www.roswellufomuseum.com
To learn more about the UFO Museum and UFO Festival in Roswell, New Mexico . . .
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Roswell, Your Travel Guide to the UFO Capital of the World!
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