Talk about alienation of affection: The organizer of a raid on Area 51 planned for later this month now says he is pulling out of a music festival associated with the event.
In July, Matty Roberts semi-jokingly proposed a storming of the gates at Area 51, the Nevada military facility that supposedly contains the secrets to extraterrestrial visits to Earth.
After some 2 million people signed up for the event ― now known as “Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All Of Us” ― Roberts and others decided to put together a music festival in nearby Rachel, Nevada, population 54. It would be called, appropriately enough, “Alien Stock,” according to Las Vegas TV station KSNV TV.
Roberts hoped Alien Stock would turn his jokey and potentially dangerous idea of raiding a military facility into something positive. But the festival received UFOs ― unusually fiery objections ― from residents of Rachel, who feared the town wouldn’t be able to handle hordes of alien seekers.
On Monday, Roberts said he is pulling out of Alien Stock, citing a “lack of infrastructure, poor planning, risk management and blatant disregard for the safety of the expected 10,000+ AlienStock attendees.”
In a statement given to KSHV, Roberts said Connie West, the owner of the festival permit, refused to provide him and his partners with “the proof that things expected at this festival were in place. In fact, she refused to provide to us, as agreed upon, contracts, proof of deposits or any paper proof of anything.”
Roberts said Alien Stock is moving to a safe, clean, secure area in downtown Las Vegas because he foresees “a possible humanitarian disaster in the works.”
He said he is not interested in creating “a FyreFest 2.0,” a reference to the much-maligned 2017 music festival that left attendees stranded and provided enough heinous and hilarious material for a documentary on Hulu and another one on Netflix.
HuffPost reached out to West at her business, the E.T.-themed Little A’Le’Inn hotel, but she did not immediately respond. The person who answered the phone said Alien Stock is going ahead even without Roberts.
West told Las Vegas station KVVU she will “do [the festival] the way I know how and what I’ve been planning for because I know no other way to do it. But it’s still happening.”
“I’m sad and I’m brokenhearted, but at the same time, it is what it is,” she went on. “If he chooses to go somewhere else, that’s his choice. I’m still having a party because people are still coming to Rachel.”
Meanwhile, a post on the town page for Rachel also mentions Fyre Festival and says it’s probably for the best if Alien Stock doesn’t end up happening.
The website also not-so-subtly suggests that visitors avoid their fair town:
If any event still happens it is going to be a pretty sad affair with no bands, very little infrastructure and a lot of unhappy campers. Instead of coming out to Rachel to storm Area 51 why not enjoy the party at one of the Area 51 Events in Las Vegas?
The “Storm Area 51” event had been planned for Sept. 20. Roberts did not immediately respond to a question from HuffPost about whether the actual raid is still happening.