The sleek, rounded automobiles parked outside the Capitol Theater
on Summers Street on Friday night were artifacts of another
generation, almost another America.
The Flatwoods Monster 55th Anniversary and Flying Saucer
Extravaganza at the Capitol Theater was part celebration and part
remembrance of an era when the nation seemed more innocent, if no
Many of the people milling around the vehicles before the doors
opened at the theater and during the brief intermission of the
four-hour show were children of the 1950s.
From conversations over the breakfast table or around the
schoolyard, they’d heard the story of the strange visitor from the
sky who came to Flatwoods. They grew up with the rumors that became
legend long before it was a book called “The Braxton County
Clayton Loudermilk from Clarksburg remembered hearing about the
Braxton County Monster or the Flatwoods Monster when he was a kid.
Stories about aliens have always fascinated him.
“I’ve always been interested in everything from pyramids, to
space travel, to aliens,” Loudermilk said. “I’ve seen Stanton
Friedman on television many times and just wanted to hear what he
had to say in person.”
Others came because aliens and UFOs are part of their everyday
Joe Gardner and his girlfriend, April Bailey, came from
Huntington to commune with others who might share their experiences.
Gardner, who works with the disabled, brought pictures of what he
believes are alien spacecraft.
“I see them all the time, since I was 4,” he said. “Back in
March, I was coming back into town and something got my attention. I
had a disposable camera in my tackle box.”
He said he started carrying cheap disposable cameras with him
when he went fishing after he got tired of people doubting the size
of the fish he caught.