UFO Description: A dark, bulbous, balloon-like UFO is seen and photographed "drifting" along to the west when looking south from a shopping center parking lot. Then a second, nearly identical, UFO is seen and photographed doing the same thing. Then two military jets (F-15s) are seen and photographed moving through the same airspace. All this happens within a few minutes.
Witness(es): Two witnesses: Keith Rowell (Oregon MUFON's Assistant State Director) to the UFOs and jets; his wife to the jets.
Time and Date: About 10 AM on March 9, 2002.
Duration: Total for both UFOs about two and a half minutes. For jets, about 15 seconds.
Place: Near the Millennium Plaza Park in Lake Oswego, Oregon.
Weather: Solid overcast; not raining; wind from ESE at 19.6 mph, gusts to 26.5 mph; 10 miles visibility; temperature 46º F.
Case Report: Millennium Plaza Park UFOs. Witnessed and investigated by Keith Rowell, OM Assistant State Director.
Here's an old sighting of mine (your Oregon MUFON Assistant State Director) that I've finally gotten around to finishing up—ten years later! Better late than never, right?! As always, be sure you download the entire OM Case Study to get all the facts before you jump to conclusions. Remember, few UFO sightings are "beyond a reasonable doubt" in certainty. This one might be some balloons, but is it? Or are they our old friends, "balloon mimic" UFOs?
The First One
I was sitting in my car waiting for my wife to finish up with her Jazzercize session when I looked over to the south of the parking lot and saw a very dark object moving along to the west about 20º up from the horizon just above some Douglas Fir trees. I tried to interpret the object as a heron or other bird or some balloons, but it seemed a little too odd somehow. It was just so dark seeming. I got out of my car and immediately started taking photos as fast as I could with my new Canon G1 (which by today's standards is a very slow operating camera). I got seven photos before it became too small to see as it receded into the distance.
A Second One
I sat back down in the car and then looked above the same trees again and, much to my surprise, a second nearly identifical UFO was doing the same thing! So, I got back out and did the same thing and got eight photos this time—or so I thought. See the case study for the full story.
I sat back down in my car thinking how very odd that two nearly identical balloon-like objects were first seen in the same place and took nearly identical paths. Well, actually, not so odd, maybe.
By then my wife had finished up with her Jazzercize session, and I told her I'd maybe just photographed my first UFOs. She said, "That's nice, dear. Now let's drive home." Then we heard a roar and I got out again with my G1 at the ready. This time I photographed two military jets cruising through the same airspace that I had just seen the UFOs in a couple of minutes before. It turns out that a couple of the three photos of the jets have "specks" that could very well be the UFOs. See the photo below.
See the photos below and be sure to read through the OM Case Study for all the facts and what they might mean.
UFO from Sequence #2 shows the lobed shape of UFO #2. There is no apparent string (if it were a balloon cluster). It has a reddish interior. It changed shape as it moved along. See the whole report for more characteristics and features of the two UFOs in the sighting. Note the lighter "halo" around the UFO. This is not a feature of the object but is due to poor high contrast processing of digital image data in early digital cameras. The sky is very noisy, too, another problem with early digital cameras.
UFOs and Jets shows two suspicious "specks" above and behind the two F-15 military jets. The jets were apparently checking out these suspicious objects only six months after the 9/11 tragedy. Were they checking out suspicious balloon clusters or suspicious UFOs? You be the judge. Read the full report.
UFO from Sequence #2
UFOs and Jets