McMenamns UFOMcMenamins 17th Annual UFO Festival:
Re-Examining the Stunning 1997 Phoenix Lights Case
Two Decades Later

– UFO Community Converges on Downtown McMinnville, Ore., May 12-15, 2016 –

WHAT: Downtown McMinnville, Ore., will be transformed again this May into a gathering place for scholars, the UFO-curious and fun-seekers alike. The annual McMenamins UFO Festival – one of the nation’s most respected and largest Ufology gatherings – takes place in the small, idyllic town of McMinnville, known for the celebrated Trent flying saucer sighting of 1950 photographs that caused a worldwide sensation.

Now in its 17th year, the McMenamins UFO Festival will draw thousands of people from across the nation to celebrate and explore the largest reported mass UFO sighting in U.S. history: The Phoenix Lights of 1997. What happened in Phoenix? On March 13, 1997, a massive boomerang-shaped object that was “several football fields in size” moved ever-so-slowly and silently over parts of Arizona as well as New Mexico. There were five spherical lights visible on the craft, possibly energy-emitting orbs of some sort. Many veteran pilots, air traffic controllers and astronauts concurred that no man-made aircraft with such attributes is known to exist. McMenamins will host key figures from the case, some who haven’t shared the same stage for nearly two decades or spoken publically outside of Phoenix.

The four-day festival provides a forum for believers and skeptics alike to attend movie screenings, presentations and group discussions with featured speakers and other special events. Featured events include popular, family-friendly activities, such as a costume parade, live music, a costume ball and new this year, a fantastical 5K.

Festival Highlights:

  • Lunch with the Speakers: Meet the festival’s UFO experts in a casual setting and ask them questions during this exclusive, limited-seating event.
  • Beyond the Phoenix Lights: Hear from Dr. Lynn Kitei, M.D., the leading authority of the Phoenix Lights case and an eyewitness to the event.
  • Movie Screenings: View the internationally award-winning documentary The Phoenix Lights: We Are Not Alone, as well as an insightful film about the 1950 McMinnville area Trent Case, at the historic McMenamins Hotel Oregon.
  • Ground Zero Live Radio Broadcast: Experience a live radio broadcast of Ground Zero with Clyde Lewis, a powerful voice in the field of paranormal news and commentary.
  • UFO Costume Parade: Earthlings of all ages are invited to don their otherworldly attire for a community parade through downtown McMinnville. Online registration required.
  • UFO Run 5K: Get ready to run like you’re avoiding an abduction! This non-competitive 5K will be fun for the whole family. Register online soon at
  • UFO Speakers Panel: Hear all UFO Festival speakers discuss pertinent issues and take audience questions.
  • Alien Costume Ball: Dress to impress for this supernatural event where attendees can compete for a prize or just enjoy the show and rock out to The Strangetones.
  • McMinnville Downtown Association Landing Party: Visit UFO vendor booths and enjoy live music and some brews in the beer garden.
  • Alien Pet Costume Contest: Dress up your furry or feathered friends in their best alien outfits.

2016 UFO Festival Featured Speakers:

  • Dr. Lynne Kitei, M.D.: As a leading authority on the Phoenix Lights case and an eyewitness to the event, Dr. Kitei, M.D. is an internationally acclaimed physician and health educator who set aside her successful medical career to document the sighting in both a book and award-winning documentary film.
  • Jonathan Dover: Dover is a veteran law enforcement officer. He has worked in the Arizona Police Department, National Park Service, Navajo Historic Preservation Department and the Navajo Nation Rangers. He was trained in Criminal Investigations and was an Archaeological Resource Crimes Investigator.
  • Stanley Milford Jr.: Milford currently serves as a Ranger Sergeant with the Navajo Nation Rangers and oversees a Special Projects Unit that investigates paranormal cases involving UFOs, aliens, Bigfoot, witchcraft and ghosts.
  • Peter Davenport: Davenport has been director of the National UFO Reporting Center since 1994, and documented scores of eyewitness testimonies from the Phoenix Lights case. Davenport is featured regularly on the Jeff Rense Radio Show and Coast to Coast with George Noory.
  • James E. Clarkson: Clarkson is currently the director of the Washington State Mutual UFO Network and is on the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) Special Assignments Team.
  • Frances Barwood: A Phoenix City Councilwoman in 1997, Frances was the only elected official to call for and oversee a formal investigation into the Phoenix Lights case.
  • Sue Watson: An eyewitness to the Phoenix Lights case who with her four children watched a massive 1,500-foot-wide unidentified black object she describes as a “floating city” fly impossibly slowly and silently over their house on March 13, 1997.

WHEN: May 12-15, 2016

McMenamins Hotel Oregon
310 NE Evans Street
McMinnville, OR 97128

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McMinnville Community Center (For Featured Speaker Events)
600 NE Evans St
McMinnville, OR 97128

PRICE: Speaker Events: $20-$40

VIP Pass: $75 (includes entrance to all five speaker events held at the McMinnville Community Center)

Alien 5K: Price TBD

All other events: Free
Learn more online and on Facebook

About McMenamins UFO Festival
Set in Oregon’s idyllic wine country 40 miles south of Portland at McMenamins’ historic Hotel Oregon, the fun and educational UFO Festival is now in its 17th year and is one of the most well-respected, credible festivals of its kind in the nation. The event began as a way to honor the 1950 Trent case in which two local citizens witnessed and photographed an unknown craft hovering in the sky, images that are said to be some of the most credible images of UFOs to date. In 2015, more than 5,000 visitors convened in downtown McMinnville for the festival and parade. Visit for more information.

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