• Creator of 'Storm Area 51' event says it's a joke

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    BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - You may be aware of a Facebook group that's gotten a lot of attention since it's creation.

    It's called "Storm Area 51: They Can't Stop Us," and it's a tongue-in-cheek call to storm the military base that's been the subject of decades of conspiracy theories.


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    But the creator of the page, Matty Roberts, 20, said not everyone realizes it's all a joke. He said he has a message to everyone who may be taking storming the military base too seriously. 

    "Please don't. I don't want anyone to actually get hurt with this. It was just -- it started as from a pure stroke of imagination, it was meant to be funny. I want to do something cool out there. Now that we have a bunch of people, but I don't want anybody to get hurt," Roberts told KTNV.

    The Bakersfield college student, who is majoring in petroleum engineering, said the Facebook group was created on June 27. By the third day, it had over a million people interested in finding out what mysteries lie inside the base.  

    "I don't know. People kinda want to know what's in there and people are just probably gonna show up because it was a meme," said Roberts.

    Now the event has close to 3 million people who say they will attend and more than 8.9 million people have viewed the event page.

    Roberts said he and his friends will now morph an out of this world experience for their followers that will make the event educational, with art installations, all while meeting new friends. 

    "I want to make it like a festival of sorts. I want to have a bunch of musical artists, everybody from the EDM world and then maybe some indie rock, some smaller guys that are up and coming. I've had a lot of people [messaging] the page saying their bands want to play there, which would be super cool," said Roberts.

    Roberts said he has been in contact with local inns near Area 51, who tell him they are already booked for their scheduled exploration of the Air Force facility in Nevada on Sept. 20 with an anime twist, like his outfit. 

    "It's relevant to the story because it says in the description of the event, it says if we 'Naruto run' we can run faster than their bullets, so this [headband] is from Naruto," Roberts said.

    Roberts said for the most part, everyone is enjoying the parody, but he has gotten a few extremists that he had to tell that it's just for fun.  

    "A few people that are really serious and I'm kind of worried about that. I have had a couple people DM the page and say, 'I am willing to die for the government, let's do this' and I'm like, 'Oh my God.' They are all like hardcore strength in numbers, that kind of thing, but if there's only like two of those guys out there I think we'll be okay," said Roberts. "Like, I figured the FBI would be knocking on my door by now, but no one has shown up and nobody has contacted me or messaged the page. It's interesting, for sure."

    The Air Force itself has weighed in on the event. They warn against attempting to visit Area 51 because it is an open training range for armed forces.
     


     

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