Msg#: 3124                                         Date: 08-06-96  09:34
  From: Julie Presson                                Read: Yes    Replied: No 
    To: All                                          Mark:                     
  Subj: Interesting news piece
Hi Everyone,

This is a news piece that was given to us about a UFO report and 
what has happened to the man who video taped the UFO. Interesting 
story, I guess it goes to show who some of the "UFO & ET experts"
really are....and who they got the title. ;-)

This is nto to say the report is bogus, but you have to admit 
the after affects and the obvious marketing value in this country
of people who have had encounters and filmed them is apparent. I 
have to wonder how long it took the promotor of the UFO Congress
to contact this man to make money off him???


Salida hails a fairly close UFO encounter

By Patrick O'Driscoil
Denver Post Staff Writer

      SALIDA -- Don't expect to see "Independence Day" invading one 
of this town's two movie theaters for another three or four weeks yet.
This is a box-office backwater to the folks who make slam-bang summer 
mega-blockbuster thrillers like "ID4," in which space aliens light up 
Earth like a box of fireworks. On the other hand, when you have already 
been visited by spacecraft, perhaps Hollywood's  science-fiction heavens 
can wait.
     He-hum. Salida already had its own fairly close encounter with 
other-worldly phenomena last summer. On Aug. 27, 1995, local restaurant 
owner Tim Edwards caught a lab certified UFO on his camcorder -- in broad 
daylight, no less.  Faster than warp speed, life around this central Colorado 
mountain town -- population 5,292 -- got a tad extraterrestrial. While locals 
watched the skies and debated the authenticity of the Unidentified Flying
Object on Edwards' backyard video, the episode became front-page news. The 
Mountain Mail, Salida's daily newspaper, later ranked it No. 3 on its list 
of 1995's top stories. Within 24 hours of Edwards' video encounter, Denver 
television news crews star-trekked south to interview the ordinary guy 
operator of the Patio Pancake Place. 
     Then came a crew from "Sightings," syndicated TV's purveyor of all 
things paranormal. Meanwhile, word of the Salida event beamed through 
cyberspace as plugged-in believers downloaded details from UFO homepages 
on the Internet. "Ufologists" suggested Salida was a "stargate," an 
intergalactic vortex for alien comings and goings. After all, the town's 
nameiis Spanish for "gateway" or "exit."
     Colorado Central Magazine, an irreverent local monthly, couldn't resist 
publishing an "exclusive picture" of a crude flying saucer on the Salida 
skyline, above a billboard with an arrow and the words, "ATTENTION UFO 
PILOTS: THIS IS SALIDA -- CRESTONE IS THAT WAY," referring to the San Luis 
Valley town that's become a hangout for New Age cultists.  Inevitably, 
Salida's Ii Vicino brew pub tapped in with a new "Alien Ale." Ads showed the 
classic 1950s movie spaceman Klaatu and his robot-side kick Gort over a 
caption explaining, "We're here for the beer."  Just as inevitably, the 
cosmic hubbub has died down. Now, some of the local scuttlebutt suggests 
that maybe Edwards concocted the whole thing just to get attention. "I've 
had a few people look at me kind of weird. I'm sure they probably talk 
behind my back," he said recently. But in this town, there's a lot more 
believers than there was."
     Edwards, 43, was a guy who liked to party hearty. But after the UFO 
sighting, he tapered way off. He took on the faraway look and sound of a 
true believer -- not unlike the spaced out Richard Dreyfus character in 
"Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (minus the living-room mountain of 
mud and garbage).
     "The first three weeks I was an emotional wreck," Edwards recalled. 
"Everything else seemed so trivial. ... My family couldn't understand my 
obsession with it."

16 HOURS of UFO FOOTAGE--- Edwards' living room has a big TV 
set, two VCRs and a shelf where his 16 hours of UFO footage share 
space with daughter Brandy's videos of Pinocchio, Casper and the Muppets.  
On-screen, the home-video UFO image is weird: a gyrating, pulsating cigar 
of light, darting and hovering in the southern sky, beyond the roof edge 
of Edwards' house. The audio track is weirder: mundane background noises 
of a summer Sunday -- guns popping from a nearby shooting range, a freight 
train wailing as it passed, an unseen plane droning as it landed at the 
little airport west of the house.
    "Dad, Can a spaceship grow bigger like that?" 6 year-old Brandy - who 
first saw the UFO -- is heard asking off camera as the picture jiggles and 
zooms in and out.
    "If ain't no kind of aircraft, I'll tell you that," Edwards' voice says 
later. There ain't no little airplane that moves five miles in two seconds." 
Subsequent reports claimed that 21 people in 13 other Colorado locations saw 
the same phenomenon within 48 hours of Edwards' sighting. So did in five 
other states. Within a month, an Arizona-based laboratory that specializes 
in studying UFO footage confirmed what believers had hoped - that what 
Edwards taped was not of  this world. Village Labs estimated the UF0 was 
a mile long, 60,000 feet or more up in the sky, darting and dancing  at 
10,000 mph.
    I am 100 percent convinced that this is a craft from another world," 
said Village Labs' Jim Dilettoso.  UFO debunkers are 100 percent convinced 
the cigar-shaped apparition is intergalactic hooey.
 "To paraphrase Sigmund Freud, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar," said 
Larry Sarner of Loveland, a member of Front Range Skeptics, unofficial 
party-poopers of UFO mania. Sarner said Edwards' encounter
"seemed to be such a run-of-the-mill case" that his group has paid it scant 
attention. "It's remarkable how in 'these cases you get such poor evidence" 
grainy, jittery, out-of-focus footage. "He spent an hour with a camera in 
his hand and had only six minutes' worth? Uh -- typical."
     About a month after the first sighting, Edwards said he taped more 
celestial oddities near the "solar corona" -- inverted V-shaped "craft," 
small white globes shooting from the sun, "angel hair" formations.
 Invariably, the footage invites wide debate and interpretation. Debunkers 
dismiss the images as only spiderwebs, flying insects and windblown tufts 
from cottonwood trees. UFO fans consider them yet more proof. 
     The Village Labs verdict sent Edwards off on a fresh round of interviews 
last fall. In November, his down-to-earth manner -- and his video -- made 
him the star of the fifth annual convention of the International UFO Congress.
     It was held -- where else? -- in the Nevada desert near the infamous
"Area 51," the remote, super-secret U.S. military base that gets star billing 
in the "Independence Day" story; line. Edwards drove out for a look himself 
along two-lane Nevada 375, which tourism-minded state officials officially 
renamed "Extraterrestrial Highway."
     Edwards thinks the general public "has been so. tranquilized into 
believing that we're the only ones in the universe." He suggested that 
recurring mass-media images of UFOs from a recent spate of space alien
themed TV commercials to movies 'like "Independence Day" -- are part of 
"a major conditioning process" to prepare earthlings for definitive news 
that somebody else really is out there, and coming to see us.
   "Everything's coming together at warp speed; 1996-97 will be the year 
the government admits we are not alone," he said. "There's something very 
major going on up there."
     At the Patio Pancake Place, a glass-encased "UFO. REALITY: UPDATE" 
bulletin board shares the front-door breezeway with the pay phone and stacks 
of tourist brochures. Inside, Edwards will sell you a thick packet of news 
clippings, press releases and other papers about UFOs.
     Very 'stressful, emotional'But otherwise, he has "backed out a bit" 
from heavy involvement in the cause. "It's been a very stressful and 
emotional period," he explained.
     But he remains "100 percent convinced" that what he saw and videotaped 
is from out of this world. When "Independence Day" finally hits town, 
"I'11 have to go see it for sure," he said.
     But Edwards added that he can't imagine so violent a scenario - evil 
spaceships, like the movie's 15 mile-wide flying manhole covers, bombing 
the world's major cities to smithereens -- when alien visitors finally 
make open and public appearances on Earth.
     "These beings are so advanced, they don't need to take over our planet. 
I believe hostility is their last intention," he said. "The extraterrestrials 
don't scare me at all. I've been more scared talking to the press."

________________________________ END _________________________________________

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