I’ll believe in you all my life, everyday. E.T… I love you.Elliott from E.T., the Extra-Terrestrial
Even with the technological advances of the modern era, some things in the world still remain a mystery. The idea of whether or not there is life somewhere beyond planet earth is a question that continues to be asked. And, in asking those questions, many people have come up with ways to try to find out the answers.
World Contact Day is one of the ways a group of folks in the 1950s tried to make contact with life that may very well lie beyond our knowledge or understanding!
History of World Contact Day
While UFOs have been sighted and reported throughout human history, the early and mid-20th century brought about a lot of questions and sightings related to aliens and whether or not there was life on other planets.
After World War II, the idea of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) became a major subject of interest. When the Roswell Incident happened in 1947, with the simple experience of a man finding a mysterious “flying disk” on his property in New Mexico, the theories began to grow.
By 1952, the International Flying Saucer Bureau (IFSB) was created by Albert K. Bender and ufologists. Banking on the idea that both telepathy and alien life were real and accessible, the IFSB decided that a day should be dedicated to the experiment of trying to transmit a message into space.
Established in 1953, World Contact Day was a time when people were encouraged to try to communicate with them through telepathy.
Different than First Contact Day, which is a fictional day in 2063 that is part of the Star Trek franchise, World Contact Day was an actual day when American ufologist and others who believed in alien life took action.
The IFSB devised a plan that included a message that all of the members of the group were supposed to be focusing on in order to transmit it to the aliens who might be listening – through telepathy. The message started out with the phrase: Calling occupants of interplanetary craft! It went on to promise peace and friendship with other life forms, and even asked for help with solving earthly problems.
Needless to say, the telepathic message did not receive a response, or not one that we know of!
World Contact Day Timeline
The Roswell Incident is reported
A “flying disk” is reported as found on a property about 100 miles north of the Roswell Army Air Field. 
First World Contact Day is celebrated
The International Flying Saucer Bureau (IFSB) designates the day for sending telepathic messages into space.
Klaatu releases “Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft”
Inspired by the IFSB message, this song is made even more famous in 1977 when it is covered by The Carpenters.
Alien is released in theaters
Now a cult classic, Alien is a Ridley Scott movie starring Sigourney Weaver and Tom Skerritt. 
World Contact Day is extended to a week
In celebration of the 60th anniversary of the first World Contact Day, the time for festivities is elongated.
How to Celebrate World Contact Day
With a day this important and mysterious, certainly there are tons of creative ideas that can be dreamed up for celebrating World Contact Day! Start by considering some of these suggestions:
Host a World Contact Day Party
Have some friends or family members who are into science fiction, UFOs, alien life or some other type of space adventure? Then gather them up and host a fun party in celebration of World Contact Day. Invite guests to dress up like their favorite alien character. Ask everyone to bring snacks that have a UFO or space theme, and don’t forget a playlist of music that goes along with the theme of the day. Make a playlist that includes songs like Space Oddity by David Bowie, Final Countdown by Europe, or Rocket Ride by Kiss.
Learn Fun Facts about Aliens and UFOs
Raise awareness for World Contact Day and impress friends by sharing some different trivia and tidbits of information that may not be widely known. Share pieces of the mystery to garner interest and get more people involved with the uniqueness of the story of life beyond. Here are a few fun facts to get started with:
While the US government originally used the moniker UFO for ‘unidentified flying object’, they eventually changed the name to UAPS which means ‘unidentified aerial phenomenon’, because it seemed less pejorative.
In April 1952, a LIFE magazine article titled “Have We Visitors from Space?” featured ten different cases of UFOs.
Roswell, New Mexico boasts the most famous UFO sighting of all time and now the entire town is dedicated to the theme, and the International UFO Museum and Research Center is located there.
Watch Some Films for World Contact Day
Films about UFOs, space travel, contact with aliens and other stories along that theme would be a load of fun to watch in celebration of World Contact Day. Invite a few friends over to have a watch party and it might even be fun to serve some alien or UFO themed party snacks!
Consider some of these movies for ideas:
- Contact (1997). Based on the book written by legend Carl Sagan, this film stars Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey and Tom Skerritt (also from Alien). The theme is around the idea of first contact between humans and much more advanced extraterrestrial life forms.
- Arrival (2016). Amy Adams, Forest Whitaker and Jeremy Renner play the main characters in this unique sci-fi film that touches on some thought-provoking topics related to language and first contact.
- Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977). This Steven Spielberg film tells the story of an average guy (Richard Dreyfuss) in Indiana who has an experience with a UFO. Thirty years later, this movie was deemed to be “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” by the US Library of Congress.
- The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951). Eventually getting a 2008 remake with Keanu Reeves, this original film tells the story of an alien with an important message for Earth. Named Klaatu, this has a connection with the band that will eventually debut the song “Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft”.
Read Up On UFOs and Extraterrestrials
Those who are interested in learning more about the inner workings and inspiration of World Contact Day might want to grab some books or do some internet research around the idea. Search up the story of the Roswell, New Mexico account, find some information about the founders of the IFSB, including Albert K. Bender, and dig deep into other stories with related themes.
World Contact Day FAQs
Who sang the World Contact Day song?
“Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft” was released in 1976 by Klaatu and later in 1977 by The Carpenters. 
Who has signed the outer space treaty?
The Outer Space Treaty was signed by the US, the UK and Russia in 1967. 
Are UFOs real?
UFO stands for Unidentified Flying Object, which means sometimes there are objects flying in space that can’t be identified. So, yes, UFOs are real! 
What is World Contact Day about?
World Contact Day is all about trying to connect with possible alien life through telepathy.