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It’s about time a real, live UFO visited us

The unidentified flying thingy hovers over the Grandview area on a recent early evening. (Courtesy of Carrie, via Action Line)

Dear Action Line: A flying object appears every night, right at dusk, in the Grandview area on the south side of U.S. Highway 160, not far from the Family Dollar. Can you help me find out what this is? I need to know. My videos are always a bit blurry when I record on my iPhone 13, but I need an answer. – Carrie

Dear Carrie: Yes, a potential interstellar mystery!

Carrie shared several videos of this phenomenon. The object sometimes hovers, sometimes moves, sometimes seems to change shape and illuminate briefly, and often shows up in whites, reds and blues.

Very strange.

For an answer to this mystery, Action Line contacted the airport director, an astronomer, and friends in the neighborhood. Two other acclaimed UFO experts, Miley Cyrus and Richard Dreyfuss, unfortunately were not available for comment. What’s kind of fascinating about UFOs is that the more our technology advances, the easier it is to believe in them and visiting aliens. You know: why not?

Tony Vicari, aviation director at Durango-La Plata County Airport, knows about flying objects, although generally the identified kind.

“It’s difficult to tell from the video what the elevation is. If it’s low, then my guess would be a drone,” Vicari said. “It doesn’t look particularly like aircraft or helicopter lighting to me, but that’s just a hunch.”

The unidentified flying thingy hovers over the Grandview area on a recent early evening. (Courtesy of Carrie, via Action Line)

Charlie Hakes, who writes an astronomy column for the Herald and is a professor in the physics and engineering department at Fort Lewis College, is an expert at figuring out the what and where of sky objects.

“Obviously a UFO,” he said. “At least unidentified by me from just a bright dot on a video.”

Hakes wondered at first if it was a planet, which often are mistaken for unusual objects because they can be very bright, but then changed his mind after one video showed obvious movement. He’s now more in the drone camp, but uncertain. He suggested using binoculars to get a better view.

“Good luck,” he concluded. “Now I am curious.”

Carrie doesn’t seem to think this is a drone, but Action Line is not convinced. Drones are the (often very annoying) thing these days, and various lights on them might seem to make them enlarge. If you can program drones to create a waving American flag, as they did for Durango’s recent Fourth of July show, then there’s not much they can’t do. Still, why is someone flying a drone every evening at dusk? Weird.

If anyone with more knowledge thinks they can shed some light or color on this issue, please contact Action Line. If you are an alien reading this, please, no abductions.

Dear Action Line: Will the Durango Community Thanksgiving Dinner be held this year? I can’t find any information. – The Gobbler

Dear Gobbler: Well, the answer is basically yes, but it’s a bit different from the past. It’s going to take some explanation.

As it did in 2020 and 2021, Manna soup kitchen again will provide “grab-and-go” meals on Thanksgiving Day. But there will be no traditional gathering at the La Plata County Fairgrounds, as there was annually until COVID-19 altered our lives.

With several local churches involved and a volunteer committee leading the way, the Community Thanksgiving had been organized for 35-plus years and fed about 1,000 people annually until 2020, when the committee saw that COVID-19 would not allow the event to be held and still meet health and safety requirements. The same decision was made in 2021 as cases began to rise in the fall.

In both 2020 and 2021, Manna, at 1100 Avenida del Sol, stepped up at the last minute to provide several hundred take-away Thanksgiving meals.

After Thanksgiving 2021, the Community Thanksgiving volunteer committee dissolved. Its future is uncertain. So Manna is filling the gap for the foreseeable future, said Ann Morse, Manna executive director. Several church groups are involved in preparation, including Christ the King Lutheran Church, which reportedly makes a stuffing to die for. That will go along with turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, and pies and desserts.

Those who want a meal can pop by Manna on Thanksgiving Day from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Manna is handing out meals to individuals as well as organizations, who can take the meals and distribute them as they see fit. There is limited seating on benches at Manna.

“We’ll do as many meals as anybody needs, pretty much no questions asked,” Morse said.

For questions or more information, contact Hunter Klein at 385-5095, ext. 113, or hunter.klein@mannasoupkitchen.com.

On a related topic, Morse pointed out that the Durango Food Bank is holding its annual Thanksgiving food box distribution on Nov. 22. Register through Nov. 15 at Eventbrite.com (search “Durango Food Bank”), or by calling 375-2672.

Email questions and suggestions to actionline@durangoherald.com or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. If you are an alien wishing to respond, just use whatever technology is easiest.