How tiny town become the 'home of ALIENS' with hundreds of UFO sightings, mystery mountain & 'crashed ship fragments' | The Sun
A TINY town has dubbed itself the world's "home of aliens" as it reports hundreds of UFO sightings and even has a lab that claims to have fragments from crashed spaceships.
Japanese community Iino-machi leans into its love of all things extra-terrestrial – with alien statues, a UFO studies lab and even a viewing tower for watching the skies.
With a population of fewer than 5,000, the seemingly eerie town is surprisingly full of life – especially the intergalactic kind.
And it was reported by local researchers that some 450 UFOs were spotted near the town and the nearby Senganmori mountain in 2022.
Eerie pictures appear to show saucer-like objects hovering the near the town that has embraced its status as a beacon for all things alien.
Legends of alien sightings and landings of mysterious spaceships have emerged in the town since the 1970s.
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The town is home to the UFO Fureai Kan (The Iino UFO Museum) and the The International UFO Laboratory, which is dedicated to researched the phenomena.
The lab even claims to have pieces of the alleged crashed spaceship from Roswell – and was due to put them on show to the public in 2021 before Covid cancelled the exhibition.
Toshio Kanno, museum director, told The Sun Online that the town has been plagued by strange occurrences for centuries.
But while these were onced chalked by to spirits and magic – now they are more commonly attributed to aliens.
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"Senganmori has been surrounded by myths and legends since ancient times, owing to its strong magnetic field," said Kanno.
Mount Senganmori stands in the heart of Fukushima – a region tragically made famous by the devastating earthquake, subsequent tsunami and near nuclear meltdown that struck in 2011.
The 1,515ft mountain with its Sphinx-shaped megaliths placed nearby in a pattern is widely recognised by locals to be a UFO magnet that draws outer space life to Earth.
Some even believe the summit hides an alien air base under is gigantic structure, and that the relic acts as an antenna for space visitors.
Enthusiasts claim to have recovered over 3,000 items of intergalactic origin, connected to centuries of mythology surrounding what residents believe could be an ancient pyramid.
Strange ancient pottery found nearby appears to show "alien" figures and unusual patterns.
And so, could this mountain be acting as a beacon for incoming alien visitors and UFOs?
Locals seem to think so as visitors from outer space has become part of the identity that runs all the way through the town.
The town displays extra-terrestrial themed attractions on every corner, including spaceship bus-stops, alien statues and even an alien street guide.
The mascot for Iinomachi is a small white alien pointing it's ET-like finger to a golden flying saucer that can be spotted on storefronts, local shops and even the deserted town plaza.
It's no surprise the small area has a prized dish of ramen served in a stone bowl rumoured to attract alien visitors.
Kanno told The Sun Online: "In 1992, the national government's regional development project led to the construction of the UFO Fureai Kan, and a town development centred around the theme of UFOs began."
Thousands of space related materials are kept at the museum, from photo panels of sightings to around 935 classified CIA documents containing records of UFO research – donated by a Japanese UFO researcher Kinichi Arai.
Arai was the founder of the Japan Flying Saucer Association which he established in 1955, and also built a UFO library in Gotanda, Tokyo.
Around 3,000 out of the 5,000 pieces in the museum were gifted from his extensive collection after he passed away in 2002.
"Some of the approximately 1,000 CIA documents are on display at all times, but more documents may be shown to the public during events," added Kanno.
Enthusiasts are often seen scrambling around them trying to translate them on their own, especially on June 24, which has been dubbed World UFO Day.
Among the archive of historical documentation, the museum also displays statues of various human conceptions of aliens, literature on the bizarre creatures and even screens a 3D film about alien lore in a virtual theatre.
These stories have helped build a tourism industry from scratch with around 30,000 people annually making the pilgrimage to the museum, which is located halfway up Mount Senganmori.
Iinomachi hosted its first UFO festival last year, to mark the museum's 30th anniversary, where participants dressed in alien costumes and took part in parades and contests.
Alien fans flock to the small town to attend their quirky celebrations as the number of visitors has reportedly grown 1.6 times since last year alone.
The Fukushima-based International UFO Institute was also established in the summer of 2021 – and they reported a total of 452 sightings in 2022.
Some 125 of these sightings were backed with photos and 24 others, by video evidence.
Kanno said the most bizarre sighting that has been reported from the town was "multiple orange UFO's flying in formation".
The UFO Fureaikan works alongside the institute and often displays peoples evidence to members of the public in an effort to keep the alien spirit alive.
"As part of our efforts to transform the town into a 'UFO village', we
concentrated on developing a range of UFO-related products, including souvenirs and gourmet foods," said Kanno.
Fukushima has slowly risen from the ashes following one of history's worst ever disasters on March 11, 2011.
After being faced with £168billion in damages, Fukushima has slowly rebuilt itself – and the UFO town is just one way they're revitalising and breathing life back into the community.
Kanno said: "It is heartening to note that a significant number of people who had to evacuate Iino after the nuclear accident have returned to their hometowns, having learned about the ongoing revitalization efforts.
"We are grateful for their trust and support, and we will continue to work hard to create a safe and thriving community for everyone in Iino."
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