Roswell Makes Plans for Alien Theme Park
"I admit to you that I am a complete lunatic," says Bryan Temmer. "But I am a lunatic with a dream."
Bryan's dream is to build an alien theme park in the town of Roswell, New Mexico, a place already known to extraterrestrial aficionados as "The Alien Capital of the World." Frankly, we don't think it's a crazy idea at all. Even Bryan admits that the usual response of people that he's approached in the industry has been, "'You mean Roswell doesn't HAVE an alien theme park?" But Bryan knows that he has a long way to go.
Bryan's first task was to win the approval of the civic leaders of Roswell, and he has. "Roswell has instant name recognition around the world, for aliens," says Zach Montgomery, Roswell's Planning Director and a theme park convert. "There are thousands of communities across the country that wish they were known for something. Anything. We need to capitalize on it."
Bryan feels that it will take $800 million to build the theme park, which is not an outrageous sum as far as theme parks go. Its name would be Alien Apex Resort, and much of it is still veiled in secrecy. Bryan, however, told us of one ride, "Alien Abduction," which would be a roller coaster in which you would "move across the plains of the Midwest in your house," then be "taken into an alien space ship," and then "some things that are still proprietary" would happen. When we pressed him for details, Bryan said that "there definitely will be some probes coming at you."
That definitely will be a leap forward from some existing alien attractions that we've visited.
There is as yet no Grand Opening date projected for Alien Apex Resort. Roswell still has to win the blessing of New Mexico's governor and the state tourism director's office. The state will have to provide some seed money.
Roswell is New Mexico's fifth largest city, but it is distant from metropolitan populations that typically sustain large theme parks. The hope is that Roswell, already a cult destination for UFO fans, will become a year-round magnet for family travel.
The team behind the alien theme park is confident that it can surmount all obstacles. "I tell people who may not initially support the idea," says Zach Montgomery, "join us and laugh all the way to the bank." And Bryan is resolute. "I have the patience to wait a hundred years if I have to."
That's longer than most people will wait for the arrival of more aliens.[02/03/2007]