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February 2019 - Watch for Flying Saucers Week

letter to Mayor Braman

Members of a group called World Wide Watch wrote to Mayor Braman in 1967 asking him for a "Watch for Flying Saucers Week" proclamation. One of the letters explained that "this year is a LANDMARK! The 20th Anniversary of the very famous phrase 'Flying Saucer,' coined in Washington State by Newsmen when a private pilot named Kenneth Arnold, Boise, Idaho related to the world that on June 24, 1947, he had observed nine disc-shaped objects flying towards Mt. Rainier."

The letters and an accompanying press release explained that to mark the anniversary, the group was organizing watch teams around the country to search the skies. One of the teams would form a caravan from World Wide Watch headquarters in Eatonville up to Mt. Rainier. Teams were to look for "intelligent patterns of behavior" or any attempts to communicate. Reports from all teams were to be collected at the Eatonville headquarters, where they then would be collated and shared.

In addition to encouraging citizens to watch for UFOs, the group also hoped to persuade Congress to pass laws allowing "legal landing and protection for friendly extra terrestrials":

It is the general consensus of many people interested in the subject of space visitation that we will be involved in an exchange of culture that will lead to interplanetary commerce by 1988. So let US open the space doors now! Let US have vision and foresight enough to begin a two-way approach to space.

Mayor Braman responded to the group:

While I appreciate your interest in this subject and recognize that it could have considerable import, I do not feel justified in issuing such a proclamation. I certainly see nothing wrong in your attempting to stir up interest to the end that many people would join you and your associates in this kind of a watch. It just doesn't seem appropriate as an official pronouncement.

The Seattle Times interviewed the group leaders at the beginning of the watch week, when they were confident they would see UFOs. One leader was quoted as saying, "They (flying saucer pilots) know we're watching because they monitor radio-station reports about our activities. We'll be ready if they respond." The newspaper followed up at the end of the week, when the group reported that two objects that "might have been unidentified" were spotted that Saturday night.