Do extraterrestrials exist? The truth is out there, and since its inception in 2016, thousands of Earthlings have been descending upon AlienCon every year in search of it. The convention — associated with A&E Television Networks and, by extension, the History Channel series “Ancient Aliens” — brings together a diverse group of science-fiction fans, “Ancient Aliens” enthusiasts, and the simply curious to explore unexplained phenomena. The convention has already been held in Santa Clara, Pasadena, Baltimore, and Los Angeles, and will have another sighting this year, in Dallas next month.
“Part of what makes AlienCon such an exciting event is how it brings different communities together,” said an AlienCon representative who asked to remain anonymous. (Hmm.) “You’ll find ‘Star Trek’ fans who love to dress up like their favorite characters, professors and scientists looking into unanswered questions, and passionate people seeking out evidence of extraterrestrial life. AlienCon is a place to celebrate shared interests, have friendly debates, and learn from one another.”
Of the Third Kind
Though AlienCon might sound a bit like an alien-centric version of Comic Con, the convention boldly goes further than focusing on the podcasters and science-fiction actors that make the pop culture convention circuit — even though “Ancient Aliens” stars do make for popular panelists at the event, and “Star Trek” actor William Shatner has been known to make an appearance or two. The convention also invites journalists, investigators, researchers, and scientists to reflect on the real-life possibilities of life beyond Earth. This year, for instance, former U.K. Ministry of Defense UFO investigator Nick Pope reflected on policy, casework, and exciting moments from his time in the field in the session “Secrets of a Government UFO Investigator.”
“The AlienCon experience is based in community,” the AlienCon source said. “It’s less about waiting in line to catch a glimpse of a TV star and more about engaging in deep conversations, making friends with like-minded folks, and coming away with new perspectives.” And, like any good convention, perhaps a few contacts that are out of this world, too.
Casey Gale is a Convene associate editor.