Simulcast, YouTube Live Streamed and on KGRA Radio Tuesday, November 19th @ 6:00PM to 8:00PM ET (GMT-5)
HOUR ONE: Astrophysicist Jeffrey Bennett on astrobiology, the possibilities of intelligent life in our universe and much more. HOUR TWO: Deep Prasad, quantum computing, artificial intelligence, extraterrestrial artifacts, UFOs and more.
JEFF BENNETT (Ph.D., Astrophysics, CU 1987) has taught at every level from pre-school through graduate school and is now a full-time writer/speaker/educator focusing on student and public understanding of math and science. He is the lead author of best-selling college textbooks in astronomy, astrobiology, mathematics, and statistics; of six books for children that have all been read by astronauts from the International Space Station and of critically acclaimed books for the general public on topics including the search for extraterrestrial life, Einstein’s theory of relativity, and global warming. His writing as earned numerous awards, including the American Institute of Physics Science Communication Award. Other major endeavors include serving as a Visiting Senior Scientist at NASA Headquarters, where he led efforts to forge stronger links between the research and education communities; proposing and co-leading development of both the Colorado Scale Model Solar System on the CU campus and the Voyage Scale Model Solar System on the National Mall in Washington, DC; and leading the creation of the free app “Totality” for solar eclipses. His personal web site is www.JeffreyBennett.com
DEEP PRASAD is working with the world’s first quantum computers in order to help build the infrastructure that will support the next decades worth of quantum technologies. His goal is to save humanity hundreds of billions of research hours in developing the next generation of photovoltaics, superconductors and metamaterials. In his spare time, he advises several blockchain startups focussed on healthcare applications. Deep was named one of Toronto’s Top 20 under 20 in 2015. He has given talks on many cutting edge technologies including the intersection of AI with Blockchain and Healthcare, as well as Quantum Computing.
The history of UFO sightings and alien encounters as portrayed in the popular media is, mostly, separated into distinct periods: modern, from the late 1890’s airship flap followed by World War II “foo fighters” into post-1947 after the Kenneth Arnold report, and ancient interaction pieced together using “evidence” from the time of cave dwelling humans up to the time of the builders of cities and megalithic structures. UFOs depicted in Byzantine paintings (misinterpreted conventional symbols) the 1561 report from Nuremburg, Germany and the 1566 report from Basel, Switzerland are often thrown in during reviews of UFO history but what about the time in between then and the 1890’s? It turns out that there are quite a few reports from the period in question and they read like modern reports although they were written before the modern context of alien visitation.
FOR FULL SHOWS, EVERY WEEK, PLEASE SUPPORT US ON PATREON UFOlogist Sam Maranto joins us to talk UFOs & Mothman in Chicago, then guest Preston Dennett discusses his latest book, Schoolyard UFO Encounters, 100 true accounts, from encounters you often hear about, to lessor known, yet still extremely fascinating. Check out show notes for links to Preston’s website and this book.
In last week’s blog a UFO park and marker designating the sight of an encounter in Sheffield, Massachusetts was spotlighted. Massachusetts holds a special place in UFO history as being the state where this country’s very first recorded encounter occurred. As of this writing, the state ranks in the top 34% for sightings reported to the National UFO Reporting Center, which is high for a state of its size. A classic 1952 UFO photo comes from the state and in March of this year an extraordinary close encounter case there was reported to the operators of the website UFO Giant. Massachusetts is also home to two paranormal hotspots where activity includes strange creatures and UFOs with one of them being just outside of Boston.
Just about every UFO history review starts with the late 1890’s airship flap and then moves on to World War II foo fighters. What may surprise many UFOlogists is that there was a 1639 encounter that was recorded by John Winthrop who was Governor at the time. On page 294 of the 1908 Charles Scribner’s Sons edition of “Winthrop’s Journal: History of New England 1630-1649 Volume I”, there is this entry which reads very much like a modern case report:
In this year one James Everell, a sober, discreet man, and two others, saw a great light in the night at Muddy River. When it stood still, it flamed up, and was about three yards square; when it ran, it was contracted into the figure of a swine: it ran as swift as an arrow towards Charlton, and so up and down about two or three hours. They were come down in their lighter about a mile, and, when it was over, they found themselves carried quite back against the tide to the place they came from. Divers other credible persons saw the same light, after, about the same place. Read more →
BONUS FULL SHOW, first hour with Kathleen Marden relays more interesting pieces to the Betty & Barney Hill Abduction Case, as well as discussing her fifth and latest book Extraterrestrial Contact: What to Do When You’ve Been Abducted HOUR TWO Stacey Wright & Marianne Robb from Phoenix MUFON to discuss the great group they are involved in, the many UFO cases in the Phoenix area and a lot more. FOR FULL SHOWS, EVERY WEEK, PLEASE SUPPORT US ON PATREON
One thing that is irrefutable concerning UFOs is that they are a part of history. No matter what they are, who reports seeing them, and whether or not the reports are believed, there are cases that are recorded in news media and literature that will be examined and pondered for generations. There are towns all over Americawhere local UFO history is celebrated, embraced and exploited for its potential to draw tourists. There are museums and monuments to visit, guided tours to take and UFO kitsch aplenty in the gift shops. Quite often the effort put into marking a UFO occurrence is solely a private enterprise started by local enthusiasts but sometimes a town will officially recognize an incident and fund a sign, plaque or statue. The rarest official recognition of a UFO incident is the erection of a roadside historical marker of which, as far as this author knows, there are only four in existence in America.
When a controversial subject is celebrated publicly it should be expected that there would be some public controversy. A town in Massachusetts, Sheffield, recently made national news due to fighting over a monument,its relocation and eventual abduction by town officials. The monument in question is a 5000 pound concrete block with a plague that marks an “off-world incident” experienced by Thomas Reed on Sept. 1, 1969 when he was nine years old. The monument was first located next to a replica of a historic covered bridge in a park created for it called, “UFO Monument Park.” In 1969, Reed, his brother, mother and grandmother were in a car crossing the bridge when they spotted a “self contained glow” which then enveloped the car. Reed next remembers being inside a large hanger-like interior and then being in the back seat of the car two hours later with his mother and grandmother having switched seats. His grandmother contacted the police and later found forty others who witnessed a large, football field sized object in the area around the time of the incident.Some of those witnesses have been supporters of the monument and continue to testify that they saw something unusual that night. What’s special about the monument is its plaque, which contains a citation from Governor Charlie Barker, which reads in part, “I am pleased to confer upon you this governor’s citation in recognition of the off-world incident on September 1st, 1969.”The monument was initially relocated because of complaints by some that it detracted from the importance of the historical bridge. It was moved to the private property nearby of a monument supporter but then found to be on a town right of way easement running through the property and, on June 4, 2019, it was removed by town workers and taken to an undisclosed location. Reed has taken legal action against the town accusing its leaders of theft.Read more →
There are UFO cases noteworthy for their extreme weirdness that every UFOlogist is probably familiar with. There is the 1952 Flatwoods Monster Case, the 1955 “Incident at Kelly”, and this writer’s favorite, the 1966 Point Pleasant, West Virginia case involving the Mothman. Some might not be aware of a seriously strange case from Genoa, Italy known as “The Zanfretta Case.” This case is chronicled in a 2014 English translation of a book by Genoese reporter, Rino Di Stefano appropriately titled, “The Zanfretta Case.” The original 1984 Italian version was titled, “Luci nella Notte-UFO: il caso Zanfretta.” The translation is a bit clumsy, which gives the book a certain charm, and has a forward written by the late Wendelle Stevens. Stevens was a prominent UFO researcher and he wrote in his forward that he was excited by the case and invited Di Stefano and the principal witness, Pier Fortunato Zanfretta to his 1991 First World UFO Congress in Tucson, Arizona.
On Friday, December 8, 1978, a six column article titled, “Close Encounters in Torriglia” written by reporter, Enzo Bonifazi, appeared in the Secolo XIX, which was the “most widely read newspaper in the region of Liguria.” Di Stefano describes conversations about the case taking place in the offices of his own paper, Corriere Mercantile, as being mostly dismissive. Bonifazi had reported that security guard, Pier Fortunato Zanfretta had not only encountered a landed UFO, but had also come in contact with “a huge being, about three meters tall, with wavy skin as if it were fat or a loose sweatsuit and gray in any case.” Italian militarized police, the “Carabinieri” had investigated after being alerted by Zanfretta’s security company, “Val Bisagno” and stated in their report that there had been witnesses in the area who had seen a “great light” over Torriglia around the same time that the events involving Zanfretta had taken place. Di Stefano was intrigued by the case and asked permission from his extremely skeptical editor to investigate the case after hours, which was granted. Di Stefano, a press photographer and a fellow reporter drove to the site and were impressed by a landing trace that had been described in the Carabinieri report. On the frozen grounds of the Villa Casa Nostra, owned by dentist, Ettore Righi, was a semicircle approximately 3 meters across denoted by 15 centimeter wide line pressed 3 centimeters into the earth.