AP

Rural Nevada not equipped for big ‘storm Area 51’ turnout

Jul 29, 2019, 1:42 PM
area 51 nevada...
In this July 22, 2019 photo, Grace Capati looks at a UFO display outside of the Little A'Le'Inn, in Rachel, Nev., the closest town to Area 51. The U.S. Air Force has warned people against participating in an internet joke suggesting a large crowd of people "storm Area 51," the top-secret Cold War test site in the Nevada desert. (AP Photo/John Locher)
(AP Photo/John Locher)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — At first, the co-owner of the quirky alien-themed motel down a Nevada highway from the mysterious Area 51 site didn’t take a posting for a prank Facebook event too seriously.

Then, her phone started ringing.

“It doesn’t stop, our phone won’t stop ringing,” Connie West, of the Little A’le’Inn, told the Las Vegas Sun.

The 10-room motel is one of few businesses in Rachel, a town of 54 residents now gaining celebrity status among aviation and UFO enthusiasts attracted by the posting about a Sept. 20 event dubbed “storm Area 51.”

More than 1 million people have responded to the internet post calling for people to “Naruto run” at 3 a.m. into the remote U.S. Air Force test area in the Nevada desert that has long been the focus of UFO conspiracy theories.

The face-forward, arms-back running style is favored by characters in the anime series “Naruto.”

“They can’t stop all of us,” the post jokes. “Lets see them aliens.”

The military is warning people not to try to enter the once top-secret Cold War site, which is posted and patrolled as part of the vast Nevada Test and Training Range.

alien area 51 nevada

In this July 22, 2019 photo, alien themed graffiti adorns a rock along the Extraterrestrial Highway, near Rachel, Nev., the closest town to Area 51. The U.S. Air Force has warned people against participating in an internet joke suggesting a large crowd of people “storm Area 51,” the top-secret Cold War test site in the Nevada desert. (AP Photo/John Locher)

After refusing for decades to acknowledge Area 51 even existed, the CIA declassified documents in 2013 referring to the 8,000-square mile (20,700-sq. kilometer) installation by name and locating it on a map near the dry Groom Lake bed.

The base has been a testing ground for top-secret aircraft including the U-2 spy plane in the 1950s and later the B-2 stealth bomber.

“Any attempt to illegally access the area is highly discouraged,” the Air Force said in a statement released by Nellis Air Force Base near Las Vegas.

West is apprehensive about what might happen if big crowds arrive.

“It’s a little scary to think that many people could descend on a town of 54,” she said. “How can you prepare?”

Down the state Highway 375, dubbed the Extraterrestrial Highway, Linda Looney, at the Alien Research Center gift shop and campsite, told the Sun she also was concerned about the effect of the Facebook post.

“I don’t think it’s just a passing fancy,” she said.

Lincoln County Sheriff Kerry Lee said he doesn’t expect many people to actually show up, and county spokesman Ben Rowley tallied 184 hotel rooms in the county.

But Lee said 500 or 1,000 sudden visitors could create traffic, parking and congestion issues in a jurisdiction with 26 sworn sheriff’s deputies and about 5,200 permanent residents mostly in rural towns including Caliente, Pioche, Panaca and Alamo.

“I think this started out as a joke but there may be enough people taking it seriously and it could be a problem,” the sheriff said. “Someone is going to get hurt and people may go to jail. It’s not anything to joke about.”
___

Information from: Las Vegas Sun, http://www.lasvegassun.com

Today’s Top Stories

AP

In Iran, protests have led to violent clashes between citizens and security forces. Protesters pict...
The Associated Press

At least 9 killed as Iran protests over woman’s death spread

The scope of Iran's ongoing unrest, the worst in several years, still remains unclear as protesters in more than a dozen cities.
3 days ago
U.S. Capitol pictured. The House just voted on an election law...
MARY CLARE JALONICK Associated Press

House passes election law overhaul in response to Jan. 6

The bill, which is similar to bipartisan legislation moving through the Senate, would overhaul an arcane 1800s-era statute known as the Electoral Count Act
4 days ago
Trump pictured. A lawsuit against Trump was just filed in new york...
Associated Press

NY attorney general sues Donald Trump and his company

Attorney General Letitia James' lawsuit is the culmination of the Democrat's three-year civil investigation of Trump and the Trump Organization.
5 days ago
el helicoide caracas...
RODRIQUE NGOWI, GISELA SALOMON and CLAUDIA TORRENS Associated Press

Surprise is key part of migrant travel from Florida, Texas

EDGARTOWN, Mass. (AP) — The chief executive of Martha’s Vineyard Community Services was wrapping up work when she looked outside to see 48 strangers at her office with luggage, backpacks and red folders that included brochures for her organization. The Venezuelan migrants who were flown to the wealthy Massachusetts island from San Antonio on Wednesday […]
7 days ago
school classrooms...
Collin Binkley Associated Press

Reading, math scores fell sharply during pandemic, data show

WASHINGTON (AP) — Math and reading scores for America’s 9-year-olds fell dramatically during the first two years of the pandemic, according to a new federal study — offering an early glimpse of the sheer magnitude of the learning setbacks dealt to the nation’s children. Reading scores saw their largest decrease in 30 years, while math […]
11 days ago
FILE - Roger Federer of Switzerland waves to spectators as he leaves the court after he lost to Ale...
HOWARD FENDRICH ASSOCIATED PRESS

Roger Federer says he is retiring from professional tennis

(AP) — Roger Federer announced Thursday that he is retiring from professional tennis at age 41 after winning 20 Grand Slam titles. This decision comes just days after the end of the U.S. Open, which is expected to be the last tournament of 23-time major champion Serena Williams’ career, and signals the real end of […]
11 days ago

Sponsored Articles

a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Rural Nevada not equipped for big ‘storm Area 51’ turnout