Time to get spooky: An alien experience

An alien photo at the International UFO Museum in Roswell.
Kimberly Nicoletti / Exclusive to Daily

Editor’s Note: “Time to get spooky” is a story in the Vail Daily exploring the spooky, strange and supernatural..

Short of going to Roswell’s annual UFO Festival in the summer, the only way to experience Roswell, New Mexico, in my humble opinion, is to go all the way – far, far away. . Walk down the street in your favorite alien outfit, take pictures with various wooden carved, inflatable or gargantuan plastic alien statues in the street, read the evidence at the UFO museum, all for yourself in the virtual reality of 1947 alien landing and government. cover and top off with a drive to the otherworldly White Sands National Park (plastic green saucer in hand, of course).

I spent October 22-23 celebrating my birthday in Roswell and White Sands with Christians and non-believers. As “Ancient Alien” aficionados, my mother and I fall into the first camp, while my father and husband balk at the idea of ​​the little green man. I admit, the theorists of the History Channel’s Ancient Aliens Making incredible leaps with some differences between their sources of history and their conclusions that aliens explain all the strange events, including the Egyptian pyramids. But thinking we’re the only game in the galaxy seems a little egocentric, so my inclination is more toward the curious, open end of the spectrum.

Kimberly Nicoletti ‘meditating’ in the Roswell UFO mural.
Photo Pat Mauk/Courtesy

My husband refused to look at the bunk, but he entertained me all weekend by wearing the green dress that we picked up at the grocery store the weekend before and putting the squid, or , as we like to think, the unusual hat, I bought in 2020, when we were planning to go to Roswell for my birthday – until we found out that the state was closed to tourists because of COVID. My father, a wonderful Vietnamese doctor who lives in the apparent world of building houses and fixing all sorts of things, walked out of the International UFO Museum and Research Center thinking “a what’s going on,” but his narrative revolves more around the military messing something up. up and created a cover story, which morphed into stories about aliens and UFOs after the military found themselves less able to entertain themselves after WWII, so strange strange stories.

A model of an alien at the International UFO Museum.
Kimberly Nicoletti / Exclusive to Daily

Honestly, I want to be sure that my father and husband will become Christians, or at least make fun of aliens, after spending more than an hour in the UFO Museum . I, personally, find it difficult: soldiers encounter unexplained equipment, government agents threaten their lives if they admit that the Roswell crash was anything but air pollution – only if the weight of the stories of the national sight was enough to encourage me. that something very different is going on. And, one wanders through the adjacent scientific archives that contain volumes of books and publications in addition to important evidence.

Despite all the heavy research and testimony, Roswell does not take itself too seriously, which is very exciting. Even the UFO Museum, which has income from sightings and abductions, has a staged UFO that, every time, is animated with smoke and aliens who talk in their native language tongue (uh, that is, if they have tongues).

A foreigner’s itinerary

The first stop on your Roswell adventure is the Roswell Visitor Center and Shop, where your campy photos begin (or, maybe you just want to pick up a cool pair of alien glasses — the Guest accommodation is your cheapest bet). This includes seasonal photos (at this time of year, picture yourself smiling under the “Halloween” sign, on haystacks, scarecrows and, of course, aliens always available, now wearing fall clothes), which free photo prints pop out as perfect gifts.

The International UFO Museum and Research Center is a must to familiarize yourself with Roswell culture, as well as NASA information and research. There is a lot of money to read on the wall, but it is worth it. Pictures, video posters, various short films and various aliens provide another way to read information, explain and meet, make fun, chat together, think about the fun.

In the short walk from the Roswell Visitor Center to the museum, take at least a few minutes to capture some creative photos or videos on the giant UFO wall, which features red hot theme: “ROSWELL … we believe!”

Dylan and Kimberly Nicoletti ‘got hung up’ on the UFO mural in Roswell.
Photo Pat Mauk/Courtesy

Along the historic downtown strip, you will pass by many decorative items and painted windows; if you are a shutterbug like me, they all deserve a snapshot. Foreign markets are fun, too; besides T-shirts and funny mugs, you’ll find everything from alien water-squirt guns to baby Yoda cookie jars and alien-themed dog leashes. Speaking of dogs, Roswell is a dog-friendly town. Most stores allow four-legged pets to kiss strangers.

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Spaceport Roswell features one of the most memorable and exciting activities, in the form of virtual reality. Our receptionists, dressed as futuristic flight attendants, don’t blink at our uniforms – all he wants to know is that we have flex capacitors in our underwear behind or baggage or other goo extraterrestrial goo, slime, mucus or glop of our people (for these are prohibited) before showing us to our shell.

Experience virtual reality in a pod at Spaceport Roswell.
Take a photo

Once there, we adjusted our VR glasses and went into the forest, dizzy from the 1947 alien crash in our swiveling chairs. The adventure takes you face-to-face, body to body with aliens before their ship crashes and lands in the hands of military surveillance. This experience is a real must-see, even if you don’t choose the alien adventure: Spaceport Roswell also has Apollo 11 and other intergalactic attractions. An idea: Accept extras, disposable ears when given, because you do not know if you will sit next to the ears like us, with four people. oh, oh and wow as they go; you’ll want to be able to focus on your own virtual reality, and ear plugs to add that ability.

Visitors can also buy tickets to BrickTown, which features aliens, pirates, moon landings, trains, cities and worlds made of more than 250,000 pieces. playing bricks. Press the button and the part lights up, while the World of Homes tells you all about the model in the video.

Across the street, the Roswell UFO Spacewalk and Gallery will take you through a beautiful, family-friendly world. Pets are allowed, and you can go through as many times as you want and take as many photos as you want. Tip: Wear something like bright white for the best photo ops.

Dylan Nicoletti and the four-legged Hani in the Roswell UFO Spacewalk and Gallery.
Kimberly Nicoletti / Exclusive to Daily

If you’re into laser tag, check out the 15,000-square-foot Area 52 Tactical Laser Tag.

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Over “the strip,” you’ll find many great photos. Dunkin’ Donuts boasts a giant green alien, while, right next door, McDonald’s competes for attention with its own UFO-like fast food restaurant, complete with streaming-color light and foreign money (only if you are tired of green. variety). Along the way, you will find several other photo ops, especially those connected to the Invasion Station shop.

I found the people in Roswell to be very friendly and welcoming; at no time do I feel “out of place” in clothes. In fact, pedestrians and shop owners seem amused. A 5-6-year-old boy shouted out the window, “Foreigner!” as his parents drove us past; tourists wanted to take pictures with, or at, us (granted, one jokingly asked my husband if he lost a bet) and people honked and waved (in a friendly way, I think ) as three of four (and two dogs), all dressed in alien garb, posed at the feet of the almighty Dunkin’ Donuts green.

We capped our day with a trip to the Robert H. Goddard Planetarium’s full-dome digital theater; it’s an affordable price of $5 (adults, children and military get a discount) for about a 45-minute film on various subjects. We immersed ourselves in it Unveiling the Invisible universewhich seems to fit the theme, with its images of x-rays, gamma rays, neutrinos, blackholes and cosmic rays.

The next day, we took a 2-hour 20-minute drive to White Sands National Park. This time, my dog ​​and I are dressed in Yoda onesie, as the big white sand seems to be the best Star Wars the background. Granted, I don’t stay in clothes all the time; I don’t want my oh-so-sexy pjs (ok, so I only wear them as dresses – until now) all over the sand when I sledded and skied (with vintage silver Volants, of course ) below. hill. That day, the first snow of the season hit Colorado, and southern New Mexico was stormy, so I didn’t ski, sled or hike as much as I wanted, although I did manage to sand angel. . My clothes protected me from the whole body, but my face was pelted, and my hair was like straw after the wind blew through it. So, if you plan to visit, try to avoid stormy days.

A weekend-long, packed tour of Roswell and the national park. Located a little over 8 ½ hours from Vail, Roswell is a different world to land, use your imagination and possibly find your own transport.


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