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Teens admit to making Solano County crop circles (Update)
BayArea ^ | 07/11/03 | Staff Writer

Posted on 07/11/2003 12:00:55 PM PDT by bedolido

Edited on 04/13/2004 3:31:32 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

ROCKVILLE, Calif. (AP) - Throngs of UFO enthusiasts, new age followers and assorted believers in the paranormal have been flocking to the Sacramento Valley to take in the dozen or so crop circles that mysteriously appeared in a wheat field two weeks ago.


(Excerpt) Read more at bayarea.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: circles; county; crop; solano; teens


1 posted on 07/11/2003 12:00:57 PM PDT by bedolido
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2 posted on 07/11/2003 12:02:15 PM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: bedolido
Some brought hope that the circles would help cure their ailments and others looked for spiritual insight, while many sightseers credited aliens for creating the circles.

They didn't feel like idiots before...the are probably incapable of feeling like idiots now!!!

3 posted on 07/11/2003 12:05:40 PM PDT by Onelifetogive
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To: Onelifetogive
They won't believe the truth... they desperately need to believe in the fantasy of UFO's, the panacea for mankind! :)
4 posted on 07/11/2003 12:08:52 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (Lurking since 2000.)
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To: bedolido
Gotta love the fact that these aliens have mastered interstellar travel, but just can't get a handle on those darn concentric circles...
5 posted on 07/11/2003 12:10:51 PM PDT by RoughDobermann
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To: bedolido
The paper said in an editor's note that the confession ``rang true.''

That's the funniest thing I've read in a while.

6 posted on 07/11/2003 12:18:41 PM PDT by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
I worked for several summers of my youth driving a tractor on the family farm in West Tennesse. Because my father was such a hardass I seldom - make that NEVER - took a break when moving from field to field.

But I do recall one afternoon, now almost 30 years ago, that while in transit between wheat fields, I came apon a perfect circle in one of the fields. It was so strange and so perfect that I dared to stop the tractor for 5-10 minutes just to observe at it.

It would be many years before I would first hear the word "crop circle".

7 posted on 07/11/2003 12:27:10 PM PDT by The Duke
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To: RoughDobermann
Lord, what a gullible breed.
8 posted on 07/11/2003 12:34:03 PM PDT by 50sDad ("Can't sleep...clowns will eat me!")
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To: Quix
PING
9 posted on 07/11/2003 12:35:37 PM PDT by LanPB01
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To: LanPB01
There's always been a percentage hoaxed.

The plant node and other 'scientific' analyses seem to indicate there's plenty that are unexplainable by normal means.

Then there's the cases of them being seen being formed by glowing orbs etc.
10 posted on 07/11/2003 12:45:55 PM PDT by Quix (LIVE THREAD NOW STARTED. UFO special Tues eve & share opinions)
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The last crop circle I made, I made while my lady love and I were in the field....
*Eyes shift left and right*
Umm.. Never mind.
11 posted on 07/11/2003 12:46:20 PM PDT by Darksheare (This space has been banned by the Americans Against Taglines.)
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To: Quix
there's plenty that are unexplainable by normal means.

Or by normal people....

12 posted on 07/11/2003 12:50:19 PM PDT by RoughDobermann
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To: 50sDad
Lord, what a gullible breed.

Nice one, tiger...

13 posted on 07/11/2003 12:50:48 PM PDT by RoughDobermann
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To: Darksheare
As a kid, I made many yellow snow circles. Do they count?

FMCDH

14 posted on 07/11/2003 12:56:00 PM PDT by nothingnew (the pendulum swings and the libs are in the pit)
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To: Aquinasfan
I asked an martian, and it rang true for him also.
15 posted on 07/11/2003 12:57:15 PM PDT by Tax Government
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To: nothingnew
Possibly.
I'd say it would.
16 posted on 07/11/2003 12:57:16 PM PDT by Darksheare (This space has been banned by the Americans Against Taglines.)
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To: RoughDobermann
Uhhhhhhhhh true.

But I'm not sure I get all your point.
17 posted on 07/11/2003 1:05:53 PM PDT by Quix (LIVE THREAD NOW STARTED. UFO special Tues eve & share opinions)
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To: RoughDobermann
Sorry, just being a smart a*s.
18 posted on 07/11/2003 1:08:45 PM PDT by RoughDobermann
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To: bedolido
For the movie Signs they intentionally had the crop circles appearing in a corn field. A lot tougher smacking down corn than wheat.
19 posted on 07/11/2003 1:28:33 PM PDT by LimitedPowers (Citizenship is not a Hate Crime!)
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To: LimitedPowers
For the movie Signs they intentionally had the crop circles appearing in a corn field. A lot tougher smacking down corn than wheat.

What needed Hellary... she could "smack" down... or make wilt, every stalk.

20 posted on 07/11/2003 1:35:29 PM PDT by bedolido (Ann Coulter... A Conservative Male's Natural Viagra)
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To: Quix
The closest these things ever come to being unexplained is that the true believers insist humans couldn't possibly make the really good ones. For some reason they insist people can't possibly make a perfect circle over 100 feet long, the Superdome not withstanding.
21 posted on 07/11/2003 1:43:36 PM PDT by discostu (you've got to bleed for the dancer)
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To: bedolido
http://www.circlemakers.org/
22 posted on 07/11/2003 3:43:40 PM PDT by ibbryn (this tag intentionally left blank)
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To: discostu
i THINK it's the more minute marked variations in soil factors and plant factors that are more telling.

And consistently so as I understand it.
23 posted on 07/11/2003 5:38:11 PM PDT by Quix (LIVE THREAD NOW STARTED. UFO special Tues eve & share opinions)
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To: discostu
LOL I have heard that several times before. What I like is when the people who make the circles come forward and admit it... and then some people choose not to believe them!
24 posted on 07/11/2003 5:43:04 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (Lurking since 2000.)
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To: discostu
--For some reason they insist people can't possibly make a perfect circle over 100 feet long, the Superdome not withstanding. --

I used to be a surveyor. It ain't rocket science, as long as you have an aptitude for spatial relationships and geometry. Here's a more complete version of the story-- apparently the kids violated probation to do this. There are plenty of priceless quotes from UFO believers as well, and a happy ending for the owners of the field.



It's a hoax!
The names of the teenagers in this story have been changed to protect their identities - Editor.
By Catherine Moy/Reporter Correspondent

Four Fairfield teenagers claim they created the mysterious crop circles that popped up in a Rockville Road wheat field in June, drawing thousands of curious onlookers and nationwide media attention.

The four agreed to tell their story on condition their identities be withheld.

The young men - three 17-year-olds and an 18-year-old - claim they spent the wee hours of June 28, pressing Larry Balestra's wheat field with boards connected to a rope. They had watched a documentary the previous Friday about crop circles and decided to do it, just to while away summer boredom while showing off their creative sides.

"We don't like when people try putting teenagers down," said John, 17.

They tried confessing several times to different visitors, but no one would believe them. To prove their role, the teens took a reporter to a set of circles that they say they created in a wheat field off Cordelia Road. No reports had been published on that second set of circles.

"This is where we practiced for the other ones," said George, 18.

Three of the boys are on probation for crimes relating to theft. All of their parents know they made the circles. One of their mothers even bought the movie "Signs" to celebrate their feat.

But their probation officers wouldn't be too happy, they said, especially because the hoax destroyed about $500 worth of the farmer's wheat fields. And, Solano County Sheriff Gary Stanton has made it clear that he views the act as vandalism and trespassing. He said, however, that he has not received a complaint and without one, will not pursue an investigation.

The teens don't feel like they've done much harm to the farmer, however.

"He's making loads of cash at his vegetable stand because of them," said Jack, 17.

The Balestra family, however, said this year's profits have been no different than last year. However, they were making plans to start selling $12 alien T-shirts today.

Balestra said Thursday he would never press charges in the matter.

Although he made skeptical statements to the press about alien involvement after the circles first cropped up, he was actually a little bit melancholy to hear the teens' claims.

"It's sad, because this made so many people happy."

He said he will harvest wheat from fields around the circles, but will leave the circles intact for people to enjoy.

The design of the new set of circles revealed by the teens includes one large and one small circle connected by a narrow path. It is in another wheat field near Anheuser Busch. The owners of the property allowed access, but didn't realize the circles existed.

"We shortened the rope on this one," explained George, as he stood in the smaller of the two circles Wednesday.

Since they left Balestra's fields with 14 connecting circles that have drawn UFO believers, extraterrestrial specialists, healers, psychics and gawkers, the young men have returned to the scene scores of times. They said they like watching the reactions of people wandering in the circles. They've even confessed more than once to so-called experts who have pooh-poohed their claims.

"We've told people that we did it, but they don't want to believe (us)," said George. A man pumping gas at the Rockville Road's Tower gas station snubbed the teens when they confessed to him.

Gerry Narito, a former juvenile hall counselor, was passing through when she met the boys.

"They were having conversations with people" at the gas station, Narito said. "They said they did it. One guy told them, 'You don't look intelligent enough to do it.' "

Narito was convinced they were responsible after listening to their story.

On Tuesday, the boys spent more than an hour explaining to a reporter how they pulled off the hoax.

Jack even went home and retrieved a wrinkled paper on which he had drawn a diagram of the crop circles. A second copy apparently went through the wash in John's pants.

The teens said they began their task by gathering the tools: A couple boards, a 30-foot ski rope, scraps of other rope and a roll of blue tape.

Larry's wife, Lisa Balestra, confirmed late Thursday that pieces of blue tape were found in the circles - a fact never publicized.

The largest circles have 60-foot diameters, twice as long as the ski rope.

"Man, we had to rest sometimes," said John, "My back got tired and I laid down in the field."

They initially walked to the wheat field on a path between the wheat and a safflower field, so they wouldn't leave footprints. They jumped into the wheat and began work on their pattern.

One teen stood in the center of the circle, holding the ski rope borrowed from one of the parents. Another would hold on to the other end of the rope to ensure they made a decent circle. Then they pressed down the wheat with the planks of wood connected to a small rope, which served as a handle.

The moon was bright that night, providing plenty of light. As for reports of mysterious lights in the field, the teens say it was their cell phones. They called numerous friends to come out and take a look, but no one came.

Since their story started making headlines, they collected every newspaper and watched every telecast on the topic, enjoying every minute of the attention.

One of their brothers even called from out of state to say he'd seen the story.

They've also enjoyed the people who have made pilgrimages to the circles, especially those who believe aliens made the formations. And they don't belittle any of the believers.

"One lady said she cured her back pain by rubbing the wheat on her back," George said. "If it does that, we'll make more circles for them."

But not all the believers who flocked to the circles have come away believing aliens left their mark. One Albany woman, who told a reporter she is a reincarnated alien, said Thursday the circles just didn't do it for her.

"I was in one group of aliens in a past life, so I think I'd know," said Pat Segrestan. "The design is beautiful, but I don't get any special feelings from it."

Paul Imlah of Fairfield and a friend said they didn't think the circles were alien creations either.

"Unless the aliens are using rope."

The teens have researched the crop circle phenomenon since June 28, and George has seen crop circles on TV that he believes no human could make. Yes, he believes in extraterrestrial life.

Crop circles were first reported in England during the 1600s. Some 250 appear annually in different sites on the globe. Self-described experts study them, believers meditate at them, and skeptics giggle at them.

In the past two weeks, four crop circle patterns have appeared in Solano County alone. The teens take no credit for a smaller circle found near Solano Community College, nor the Vacaville circle, which looks like a squashed bug replete with antennae in a corn field at Leisure Town and Fry Roads.

"That one is funny. What did that pilot say? 'It must have been a drunk alien,' " John said.

The foursome would be glad to demonstrate their skills of circle making - if the law wouldn't bust them for it.

"We just did it for fun - to see if we could do it," George said.


25 posted on 07/12/2003 6:15:31 AM PDT by ovrtaxt
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To: Quix
The last crowd of crop circle true believers on FR were very addicted to the "perfection" angle. They also could go on for hours and hours about "sacred geometry". They quite accidentally did a very good job of debunking the whole thing.
26 posted on 07/12/2003 12:35:29 PM PDT by discostu (you've got to bleed for the dancer)
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To: bedolido
"The circles wiped out about $500 worth of wheat. But Larry Balestra, the field's owner, told the paper he had no intention of pressing charges. In fact, he told the paper he's preparing to sell $12 alien T-shirts. "

Wheat revenue is about $120 to $190 per acre. That picture looks like it is well under an acre, maybe a half acre, scaling the size of the road in the background. No way that is 2.5-4 acres. No wonder the farmer is willing to sell T-shirts.

27 posted on 07/12/2003 12:48:10 PM PDT by HighWheeler (Fear is the path to the Dark Side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering)
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To: HighWheeler
I played with the math too. If the biggest circle is a 60' radius, thats going to be around 1/4 acre. The other areas don't look to be much more than that total combined, so about 1/2 acre is most likely.....$1000 acre is tobacco money, not wheat.
28 posted on 07/12/2003 1:01:18 PM PDT by Rebelbase (........The bartender yells, "hey get out of here, we don't serve breakfast!")
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To: discostu
Certainly there are loonies on all sides.

But, supposedly, IF the cattle mutilations are any clue, ET's et al ARE more perfectionistic successfully at a number of things than we are.

But I still put more stock in the plant node differences within the circles vs outside them as the more telling evidence.
29 posted on 07/12/2003 1:58:08 PM PDT by Quix (LIVE THREAD NOW STARTED. UFO special Tues eve & share opinions)
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To: RoughDobermann
Nice one, tiger...

You got some entrails on you there, slick.

30 posted on 07/12/2003 4:16:37 PM PDT by 50sDad ("Can't sleep...clowns will eat me!")
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To: The Duke
I'm still thinking "weapons systems demonstration" when I hear talk about the big, fancy ones.
31 posted on 08/08/2003 5:02:24 AM PDT by risk
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