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Alienstock: festivalgoers fail to storm Area 51

Between 1.5k and 3k people attended Alien-themed events in Nevada towns over the weekend, a far cry from the 2m ‘attending’ the original Storm Area 51 Facebook event

By Anna Grace on 23 Sep 2019

Alienstock: festivalgoers fail to storm Area 51

Aliens prepare to see Blink-182 at Brooklyn's Barclays Center

image © Alienstock

Alienstock, which began as a viral internet meme, became a point of contention with local residents and the US Air Force and was eventually relinquished by its creators, culminated this weekend in small gatherings of people in towns near to the Area 51 military base in Nevada.

Lincoln County Sheriff Kerry Lee estimated that around 1,500 people had gathered at festival sites in the towns of Rachel (population ~50) and Hiko (population ~120), with a further 150 travelling up to the Area 51 gates. Another estimate puts the number of campers at the Rachel event at 3,000.

Nobody succeeded in ‘storming’ the facility, a highly classified and conspiracy-theory riddled US Air Force base. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, two arrests were made, one for an attempt to enter the gate and another for public urination.

The Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us event, which garnered over two million Facebook attendees, invited fans to raid the US Air Force facility and “see them aliens”.

Alienstock culminated in small gatherings of people in towns near to the Area 51 military base

A live music element was later added to the event, which was dubbed Alienstock, and scheduled to take place from 20 to 22 September in the town of Rachel in Nevada.

Following complaints from local residents, a warning from the US Air Force and concerns over public safety, Storm Area 51 creator, Matty Roberts, stepped away from the event, instead teaming up with the one-day Bud Light Area 51 Celebration in Las Vegas.

Separate events took place near to the Air Force base, with live music at the Little A’Le’Inn in Rachel and talks from UFO enthusiasts, artists, musicians and filmmakers at the Area 51 Basecamp event in Hiko. The 5,000-capacity Hiko event was cancelled after the first day, having attracted only 500 attendees, reports the Star.

Blink-182 took inspiration from the Storm Area 51 event, creating a Facebook page for their 20 September tour stop at New York’s 19,000-capacity Barclays Center to ‘Invade Brooklyn, They Can’t Stop All of Us (Aliens Only)’. Fans were encouraged to dress up “as aliens or nurses OR nurse aliens”.


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