Twenty years ago, the owner of my hometown bakery in Deer Lodge caused quite a stir when he returned from a camping trip claiming to have had a close encounter with an alien spacecraft. The local paper even ran a story about it, complete with the drawing the baker had sketched of the alleged spacecraft. It turns out flying saucers look a lot like a donut with sprinkles.
Regardless of what that baker saw that night, Montana, with its wide open spaces and few people to fill it, has had its share of alleged otherworldly encounters over the years. And while it's easy to dismiss these encounters as the product of too much beer (or too many donuts), the recently released reports on Unidentified Flying Objects from the Federal Government by the New York Times last month makes these stories worth revisiting.
Joan Bird, a lifelong student of unexplained phenomena and author of Montana UFOS and Extraterrestrials, has been tracking and writing about alien incursions into the Big Sky State since the 1980s. The North Valley Public Library in Stevensville hosts Bird for its Montana Conversations program. The audience is invited to share their own stories of extraterrestrial interactions. Let me know if any of them look like donuts, though.
UFOS and Extraterrestrials in Montana featuring Joan Bird at the North Valley Public Library on Thu., Jan. 11, at 6 PM.