[CNI News thanks Deon Crosby, Director of the Roswell International UFO Museum, for sending this press release, dated May 13, 1998. For further information, contact Ms. Crosby by email at email@example.com; or contact the museum by phone, 505-625-9495.]
Roswell, NM -- With an anticipated 1998 visitor attendance of 310,000 and an increase in interest by motorcoach companies, the International UFO Museum and Research Center is facing a coveted business problem: the present facility on Main Street will be too small to adequately serve expected crowds in the very near future.
The Museum announced this week their 5-year expansion program -- not just in buildings, but in worldwide service, a vision recently fueled by the donation of an archive collection of UFO materials estimated to be worth $250,000.
"We want to become the clearinghouse for information -- not just the place that information is gathered, but to go to the next level by technically compiling, studying and distributing to the public this information," stated Deon Crosby, Museum Director.
The Museum Board of Directors evidently sees this as a tangible goal. They just signed an agreement with United Continental New Mexico, Inc. to purchase 25 acres of property within the Buena Vida Subdivision on Hwy 70 west of Roswell.
Board President Glenn Dennis is eager to see the Research Center grow and expand. "We've got to concentrate on providing a standardized center that can be tapped into from around the world. We've waited too long in addressing this issue."
"It will take several years to raise $7.5 million dollars, the estimated amount required to begin the first phase," Crosby says. "Ours is a 5-year plan. But we believe in our people, and we believe in this organization!"
The management of the UFO Museum is working with several grant writers and plans are underway to begin a major fundraising program. Crosby says that leading computer companies will be contacted in an effort to foster partnerships that will provide the museum with the latest state-of-the-art equipment. In turn, those companies will be a part of the largest and most comprehensive research facility on UFOs in the world.
The plan calls for three phases. Phase I will include creation of a single facility housing a 30,000 sq. ft. interactive museum and gift shop, a state-of-the-art computer/research center, and an office complex.
Phase II will include a separate facility housing a "Science and Space theme" hands-on Children's museum and educational programs that will reach out to other parts of the U.S., such as traveling children's exhibits and production of videos and cd-roms on UFO and space anomalies targeted towards adolescent audiences.
Phase III will incorporate a large auditorium/lecture hall facility that will be utilized for regular Museum lecture series and conferences as well as various community activities. This facility will also include several classrooms.
Statistics bear out the claim that UFOs have created a thriving tourism flow into Roswell. Total attendance to the museum in the first quarter of 1998 was 38,004, 59% higher than during the same time period in 1997.
A UFO Museum in-house survey asks visitors if they came to Roswell specifically to see the UFO Museum. During the first quarter of 1998, a whopping 69% answered "Yes."
The International UFO Museum will not be vacating its present downtown facility completely. Discussions are underway to incorporate at least part of the current Museum into a docking location for buses that will transport visitors from the city to the new location. The Main street location will also continue to serve as the home of Roswell UFO Tours, a company that services individuals interested in visiting the various sites in and around the city that were involved in the 1947 Roswell Incident.
The International UFO Museum is open 7 days a week, 10am to 5pm. Summer hours (opening at 9am) begin Memorial Day Weekend and last through Labor Day. Admission to the museum is free.
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