Slice of Life

Dive into the extraterrestrial world at Mutual UFO Network’s monthly lectures

Casey Russell | Feature Editor

The monthly UFO lecture series at May Memorial Unitarian Universalist Society in Syracuse will discuss topics of crop circles, alien races, alien agendas and experiences with extraterrestrials.

Standing 9,500 feet above sea level on the Rocky Mountains, Linda Moore saw something strange. The object above her was unlike anything she had seen before. Alongside one other person, she was unsure of what to do, yet incredibly fascinated at the same time. One sighting of what she believes was a UFO, and she had to know more.

Now with the help of the New York Chapter of Mutual UFO Network, or MUFON, Moore will host lectures about the extraterrestrial world. The topics will include crop circles, alien races, alien agendas and experiences with extraterrestrials. The lectures begin Saturday and continue through the last Saturday of each month through October 28, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at May Memorial Unitarian Universalist Society in Syracuse.

“We’re pushing the educational piece of this,” Moore said. “This is how you can educate yourself about the phenomenon and draw your own opinions for general interest and service for humanity.”

Each month the lectures will host speakers for different UFO topics. Samuel Falvo, MUFON State Director of New York, will kick off the lecture series this weekend discussing the Roswell Crash of 1947 — a case in Roswell, New Mexico where a UFO crashed onto a ranch and the military later claimed was a weather balloon.

Moore said the Roswell UFO Crash was the first widely disputed case in America.

“If you start reading it, it’s unbelievable the amount of information that’s out there,” Moore said. “How they have managed to squash it down for this long is a mystery because all you’ve got to do is just barely open the door and it’s overwhelming, the evidence itself.”

Since MUFON began in 1969, the network has expanded internationally and has a live map presenting the reports of UFOs all over the world.

As people report potential UFO sightings on MUFON’s website, state chief investigators send field investigators to search into each case by talking to people about what they saw or experienced. New York alone has 12 investigators.

Keith Conroy, a MUFON field investigator, joined in 1993 after talking to an investigative reporter and following him on a crop formation case. From that moment, he promoted himself on television and radio to make his presence known as a MUFON field investigator.

“I tell people, ‘Don’t believe anything that you see on TV, magazines and newspapers’ because that is all meant for entertainment, and that lacks in credibility and facts,” Conroy said. “There’s a lot of hardcore information there that I can’t imagine not wanting to know more after scratching the surface.”

Conroy said one of his most interesting cases happened in Herkimer, New York. Two boys, ages 9 and 11, were playing in a bowling alley parking lot while their parents were inside. At one point they saw a large triangular object with three bright lights and a swirling red light in the middle appear over the lot.

The younger boy was so scared that he hid under a parked car, while his older brother stood stunned looking directly up at it. Right after the object moved away, a police car pulled up, and an officer asked the boys if they saw anything. The boys told him where the object went, and he sped off to follow.

After gathering all of the information in a case, the investigators analyze the sighting’s evidence to classify it as a misidentification ­— like an airplane, a weather object or fireworks — or truly an unidentified object.

Out of the 5,257 cases reported in 2016, about 95 percent were explained as misidentifications, and 5 percent were classified as UFOs, Conroy said.

Moore hopes having these lectures and open discussions will create an environment to get more people involved and even share their own encounters and stories.

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