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Buck Nelson UFO Festival and Solar Eclipse

I had the good fortune to be invited to speak at the Buck Nelson Festival in Mountain View, Missouri this past weekend, with the added bonus of viewing the solar eclipse in totality from this small town with around 3,000 residents.

Buck Nelson was a UFO Contactee, having had his first encounter with spacemen from Venus on his farm in Mountain View in 1953. He had around 20 Spacecraft Conventions at his place starting in the late 1950's. People traveled from as far as California and New York to attend, bringing their camping tents and cooking utensils along for the three-day events. Speakers told about their UFO sightings and contact experiences, and some, like Buck, traveled to space.

According to some locals I spoke with who attended Buck's conventions as children, there were license plates from all over, and people had to endure a lot of dust and dirt. Buck set up sheltered stands for drink and food vendors, and bult a small stage for speakers. And there was a lot of music. One person told me that someone sang 100 or so verses of Amazing Grace at one of these conventions. Maybe they just needed someone to fill time.

The Story: Buck said that he was hit by a blinding light from three hovering craft one day, and it knocked him to the ground. But he was instantly healed - his chronic back pain suddenly disappeared, and his eyesight improved so much he no longer needed glasses.

Later, a craft landed, and three spacemen who looked like humans visited with Buck. They returned several times over the next few months and even brought their very large 300lb. dog with them. Finally, they offered to take him on a trip to space, and he went with them, visiting with the people who lived on the Moon, Mars, and Venus.

Buck was a minor celebrity in those days, traveling the saucer convention circuit around the United States to share his story.

There were upwards of 2,000 people attending Buck's event from all over the country during the early years, but the attendance steadily declined until at one point, Buck quit having the conventions. His book, "My Trip to the Moon, Mars, and Venus" explains his encounters in detail.

Robin McCollough and Crystal Stoops were the main coordinators of the 2024 Buck Nelson Eclipse Festival, and they pulled it off nicely, along with a lot of volunteers. There was a Cosmic Art Show, in which multiple displays of outstanding artwork were presented. Many had a Buck Nelson theme. And there was an impressive display of Buck Nelson memorabilia, largely from Sue Whitten. There was an "Out of this World" craft show, a Buck Nelson reenactment by Kenny Smith, a cosmic light and music show, and more.

Debbie Ziegelmeyer, State Director for Missouri MUFON, presented "The 50th Anniversary of the SE Missouri Ozarks UFO Flap," and I presented "Buck Nelson, Space Traveler." The audience spoke about their encounters with Buck, and most said they didn't have a reason not to believe Buck's story.

The event's Facebook page has been changed to Buck Nelson Festival/Metal to the Peddel 2025, so it looks like plans are already underway for next year! If you're looking for a UFO event to attend after another trip around the Sun, keep this one in mind because I'm sure it will be a good one!

Watch this 5-minute movie of the solar eclipse from Mountain View!

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