Something strange is afoot in the high desert of Nevada, and local authorities are beginning to grow concerned.
Tomorrow marks the day in which a peculiar scene is about to take place: “Storm Area 51, they can’t stop us all”, a Facebook event phenomenon, is set to kick off on Friday, with as many as two million-plus people having RSVP’s to the online invitation.
Of course, it is doubtful that so many would make the migration to rural Nevada for a chance to be gunned down by security guards at the ultra-secretive military installation, but even a few thousand curious folks could spell trouble for the tiny towns that dot the area.
The Internet joke that went viral has spurred two rural Nevada counties to draft an emergency declaration, with local law enforcement planning to team resources with the state and neighboring counties ahead of Sept. 20-22 events. During the day on Wednesday, numerous emergency vehicles could be seen heading north along U.S. 93 toward the site, and staging areas could be seen with fire and rescue personnel.
Flight restrictions have been issued for the area surrounding Area 51 from Thursday through Sunday, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA’s “notice to airmen” states that pilots are not allowed to operate aircraft near the Nevada National Security Site from 7 a.m. on Thursday through the same time on Sunday for “special security reasons,” the FAA’s note states.
One local tour guide has concerns of his own:
“If there happens to be any problem, people could be trapped out here,” Ken Sig, a tour guide at Las Vegas Adventure Tours, told Fox News Wednesday during a lengthy 10-hour tour of the area. “It could be like Woodstock in the desert.”
In the nearby town of Rachel, locals were growing restless.
When arriving at the Little A’Le’Inn, a woman who said she was a resident could be seen beeping her horn and yelling out her window at someone who left camera equipment behind a parked vehicle, partially blocking where she intended to drive.
“I’m tired of all this,” she shouted.
The event even drew a bachelorette party from the United Kingdom, who stopped to pose for photographs as close to Area 51 as military personnel would allow. One of the women in the group described her time in the area as “surreal”.
Become an insider!
Sign up for our free email newsletter, and we'll make sure to keep you in the loop.