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UFO Welcome Center, Bowman

3.2
#1763 of 2,092 in Things to do in South Carolina
Landmark · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
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The UFO Welcome Center is a tourist curiosity located in Bowman, South Carolina, United States, built in the back yard of Jody Pendarvis. It consists of a 42-foot-wide flying saucer (13 m) built out of wood, fiberglass, and plastic. The structure, entered via a powered ramp, is mounted on four columns, designed to raise and lower with motors. In addition to a labyrinth of mechanical and electronic salvage parts, the saucer is furnished with a bed, satellite television, air conditioning, toilet, and shower. Pendarvis envisioned himself as being an ambassador to aliens and wanted to provide a facility where they could rest after a long journey on UFOs.

Construction on the saucer began in 1994 and it soon became a local tourist attraction. A fee of one dollar was charged for entry. The center was the subject of a 2001 segment in The Daily Show, in which Stephen Colbert presented a caricatured tour of the attraction. In 2003 Pendarvis added a smaller saucer, about 20 feet in width, to the top of the original structure and began living in the saucer during the summers when the saucer is cooler than his nearby mobile home. In lieu of an admission fee, there is a painted blue wooden container that says "Tips" near the entrance.
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UFO Welcome Center reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
27 reviews
Google
3.9
TripAdvisor
  • Awesome stop for social media. The video I made did very well on Instagram. I also shot a bunch of still photos to use on other social media platforms. 
    Awesome stop for social media. The video I made did very well on Instagram. I also shot a bunch of still photos to use on other social media platforms.  more »
  • The people who rated this low were apparently expecting something more. I'm one of those people who like to drive out of my way to see the cool things that people make. Instead of being "normal... 
    The people who rated this low were apparently expecting something more. I'm one of those people who like to drive out of my way to see the cool things that people make. Instead of being "normal...  more »
Google
  • I did not go inside. But looks pretty random and fun. I happened to run into it because of the detour I had to take.
  • Such a neat little place. Although very junky you can tell someone put some time and love into it

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