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UFO Landing Pad
When communities commemorate the past, they often choose to look into the future for inspiration in constructing their tributes. Such was the case with St. Paul in 1966-67, when the town began its preparations for the celebration of Canada’s centenary. While the town gained prestige in 1964, by completing the first major Centennial Project in Canada, the St. Paul Recreation Centre, it was a venture of another kind that would capture the imagination of Canadians. Inspired, in part, by a project initiated by the Canadian government to encourage communities to build centennial monuments, St. Paul took a unique approach to building their largest Centennial project. Instead of a statue or a park, they constructed something much more extraordinary—the world’s first UFO landing pad. The project was the brainchild of W.R. Treleaven of Hamilton, Ontario and Ken Reed of Calgary. Promotion of the new landmark was assumed by the St. Paul Centennial Committee.
The 130 tonne concrete landing pad was erected near the main entrance to the recreation grounds, on land donated by the town of St. Paul. In the spirit of the Canadian Centenary, a time capsule was sealed into the backstop, with letters addressed to Canadians from Ernest Manning, the mayor of St. Paul, and the president of the St. Paul Chamber of Commerce. The capsule will be unearthed in 2067.
Likewise, engraved on a dedication plaque is the following statement:
"Republic of St. Paul (Stargate Alpha). The area under the world’s first UFO Landing Pad was designated international by the Town of St. Paul as a symbol of our faith that mankind will maintain the outer universe free from national wars and strife. That future travel in space will be safe for all intergalactic beings. All visitors from Earth or otherwise are welcome to this territory and to the Town of St. Paul."
The project garnered much attention from the Canadian government. The Honourable Grant MacEwan, then Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, helped break ground in 1967. Likewise, in a grand display, the Minister of National Defence, The Honourable Paul Hellyer, arrived by helicopter for the official opening ceremonies.
In total, the final cost of the peculiar project was $11,000, with construction and materials donated by local companies. The 1990s saw the addition of a Tourist Information Centre a UFO Interpretive Display, which includes photos of alleged UFOs, crop circles and other unexplained phenomena. Today, the site attracts visitors from around the world, and was recently the site of an international UFO conference in 2000. At the top of the list of famous visitors to the site are Queen Elizabeth II and Mother Theresa.
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