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Visitors, businesses prepare for potential ‘Storm Area 51’ crowd

Posted at 2:02 PM, Jul 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-26 16:43:02-04

It’s dusk in Nevada. About 20 minutes outside of the bright lights of the Las Vegas strip is a small park.

The people gathered there don’t want their exact whereabouts published for fear of tipping anyone off.

“I produce and lead these UFO hunts, says Joshua P. Warren, who calls himself a paranormal investigator and runs a paranormal show and a website called CreepyVegas.com .

“We want to see if we can actually summon one of these things so that it might even come down from the sky.”

Warren is determined to have another UFO sighting—and this time capture it on film—ever since he says he saw a spaceship several years ago.

“It was so big,” he recalls. “I can tell you I’ve never felt so small in my entire life.”

He and his fellow UFO hunters use a combination of techniques--from the modern tactics, using high-speed cameras and night vision, to the less technical things like a Ouija board.

But as seriously as he takes the search, Warren says he’s not going to the so-called “Storm Area 51” event that’s gone viral.

“The reason is, I actually do understand that this is a true military base. It’s active,” he says. “It’s not Disneyland, and I think its disrespectful to go there and badger those people as they’re working.”

Area 51 is the colloquial term for the highly-classified Air Force facility located in the dessert about 150 miles from Las Vegas, and it’s long-rumored to contain evidence of extraterrestrial life.

There are no signs pointing people toward the entrance. For that, you’ll have to Google it. But you’ll know you’re in the right place when you see red and white “No Trespassing” signs alerting you to a military installation next to a dotted line on the road.

Rumors are that once you set foot on the other side of that line, an official will drive over a nearby hill, point a gun at you, and ask you to leave. Our reporting team chose not to test the validity of those rumors.

The only business within miles of the area is the Little A’Le’Inn , a café and motel along State Route 375, which is commonly known as the Extraterrestrial Highway.

“Everyone wants to know what’s behind those mountain ranges,” says Connie West, whose family owns the inn. “But I don’t care.”

West was not so eager to participate in another interview. Since the event exploded on social media, she’s been inundated with calls, emails, texts and visits coming from people all over the world.

Some call asking if they could use her land for concert events the day of the so-called “storm,” while others still call to book a room. Don’t try though. The 10 rooms at the inn are all booked for the day of the “storm” event and have been sold out for weeks.

“Storm Area 51” began as a joke, according to the creator of the page. However, 2 million people have responded on Facebook saying they’re “going,” and the “joke” has become so large the Air Force was even forced to issue a statement discouraging anyone from illegally accessing the area.

West believes there will be people here, though she admits she isn’t really sure exactly how many people will show up.

“I have no doubt it’s going to happen,” she says. “I think it’s going to end up being a great big party.”

West is hoping that’s the case, because anyone who chooses to cross that line, as she puts it, “that’s really a stupid thing to do.”

“It’s a federal trespass and it will follow them the rest of their lives,” West says.

Nick Weir—his name does not have a “D” on the end, but he often goes by “Weird” given the nature of his work—is part of Joshua P. Warren’s UFO hunting crew.

Weir says he is absolutely going to the event.

“It’s too much of an opportunity to pass up,” he says. “There’s so much information to be gathered at that location.”

But how much he’ll participate in if people start breaking the law, he isn’t sure.

“The risk is high, and I understand that fully,” Weir says. “That’s why I personally am going to be kind of hanging back and seeing what other people will be doing out there.”

He, too, thinks it could end up just being one big party. But if others really do try to cross the line?

“If there’s an opening, maybe. Maybe,” he says. “If by some miracle thousands of people are crossing it and it seems like we could make any kind of progress, maybe…just to get a couple of pictures of what might be inside Area 51.”

He just won’t be the first one to make a move.

“I might give them a couple of minutes of head start and then go,” he says.