Local hotels overbooked as joke plan to 'storm' Area 51 gains traction
Despite warnings from the U.S. Air Force, the joke plan to “storm” Area 51 continues to gain traction with local businesses reporting an uptick in business.
“It’s really booming some small little towns in this area,” Pamela Broxson, general manager of the Sunset View Inn, told CTV News Channel on Friday.
Located just 45 minutes away from the infamous Nevada Test and Training Range, a U.S. Air Force facility that has been the centre of UFO conspiracy theories for decades, the Sunset View Inn is completely booked on the dates of the proposed raid -- a volume of bookings Broxson has never seen.
What started as a prank event on Facebook has exploded into a viral phenomenon. To date, over 1.7 million users have responded to the event saying they plan to raid the mysterious and heavily guarded site at 3 a.m. on Sept. 20.
Earlier this week, the U.S. Air Force issued a statement saying "any attempt to illegally access the area is highly discouraged."
According to Broxson, those planning to storm the facility should take the warning seriously.
“I’ve had guests try to go out there and they’ve come back looking like ghosts because they’ve been drawed upon,” she explained. “Guns pulled on them for going past the barrier.”
Broxson, who believes no one will be successful in storming Area 51, says that those who live in the area are used to the tight lips of the military who refuse to answer questions about the facility.
“My youngest children have seen lights. We’re told its nothing… I can’t explain the bright lights that are there and then gone, but the children have seen them,” she said.
“No one will answer you. It’s all tight lipped -- you can’t even give questions to them. You can start and they shut you down real quick.”
But the economic effects of the viral event are welcomed by business owners like Broxson, who says local businesses are planning on welcoming so-called “stormers” with bands and setting up extra spots for those who want to camp out.