You say you saw what?!

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s … a fake flying saucer.

A party that’s out of this world: Visitors to last year’s UFO Experience and a couple of extraterrestrial friends. courtesy Speaking of Strange

Consider yourself warned: The night sky in Barnardsville will be full of faux-paranormal paraphernalia on Friday,  Aug. 17. Is it the makings of a well-orchestrated hoax? Not quite. The third annual Speaking of Strange UFO Experience is a cookout with a twist, featuring a competition to see who can build and launch the best fake UFO. The hand-built crafts are usually lifted into the night sky by helium balloons and tethered to the ground with fishing line. They’re typically made with glow sticks, lightweight LED lights and glow-in-the-dark paint. Judges will choose a winner based on which airborne work of art most resembles a real UFO.

And if the notion of a real UFO strikes you as strange, then maybe you haven’t heard of Joshua P. Warren. The local paranormal researcher, who hosts a Saturday-night radio show on WWNC called Speaking of Strange, is hosting the event. A nationally recognized author, Warren is an authority on all things eerie, with interests ranging from ghosts to psychics to, of course, extraterrestrials and their mysterious aircraft. 

Guests attending the free cookout are asked to bring their own food to grill, as well as their own materials to make a UFO. The contest winner will receive a prize, and curious onlookers are welcome to come out and enjoy the spectacle.

The event will begin at 7 p.m. at the Big Ivy Community Center in Barnardsville. The UFOs will be launched after dark. Visit for more information.


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