September 29, 2002
Curious turn out for alien gathering
UFO researchers meet at Kings Island
By Lisa Bernard
Cox News Service
MASON | "Rebirth of Curiosity" was the theme Saturdayat the 39th annual National UFO Conference held at Kings Island Resortand Conference Center.
Hundreds attended the all-day event, checking out everythingfrom plaster molds of alien footprints to literature written by alien abductees.
Dave Bachman of northern Kentucky said he came to feedhis curiosity.
"This type of thing has always fascinated me," he said."I don't know if everyone's story is true, but I think there's too muchof it out there for it all to be hoaxed."
Laura Bentley of Cincinnati said she attended to seewhat "strange people came out of the woodwork. I guess it's morbid curiosity."
Curious people like Bachman and Bentley keep alivethe study of possible extraterrestrial life, said conference coordinatorKenny Young.
"Often the subject of UFOs is one of tomfoolery, andwe know that," Young said. "We don't take ourselves seriously, but we takeour research very seriously."
Young said "certainty" — about uniqueness of life onthis planet or any set of beliefs — can lead to limiting, deadly consequences.He used last year's attacks by Muslim terrorists as an example.
"They had certainty in their faith and it gave themmotivation behind their actions," he said. "Perhaps if they were curiousabout other cultures and beliefs, things might be different today. Curiosityis perhaps the only mechanism we have against the scourge of certainty."
Among the speakers was Cincinnati-based UFO investigatorDonnie Blessing of the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), who said Ohio has atleast 50 reported UFO sightings each year.
A retired Clermont County librarian, Blessing has beeninvestigating UFO events for two years and is director of MUFON's southernOhio branch.
"It's hard to tell if people are telling the truthor not when I call them and talk to them about their sighting," she said."Some of the stories seem too fantastic. But when you get them in person,you can tell pretty quickly."
Blessing added, "People need to have an open mind aboutthis. It's just up to us keep researching."
[From the Dayton Daily News: 09.29.2002]
Copyright © 2002, Cox Ohio Publishing. All rightsreserved.
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