Circles are the signs of the times in Northern California, as the largest formation of crop circles ever reported in the U.S. is drawing large numbers of visitors to an 80-acre wheat field.
The mysterious shapes appeared in the small town of Suisun Valley.
"You won't believe what I'm looking at," farmer Larry Balestra told his wife via cell phone when he first discovered the damage, according to the Fairfield Daily Republic.
Over a dozen circles were created by flattened wheat to form a symmetrical, abstract design more than 100 yards in length.
Just like the Mel Gibson character in the movie "Signs" speculated, Balestra thinks someone must have vandalized the field overnight.
"I guess some people have too much time on their hands," he told the Republic, shaking his head.
12-year-old Pat Kavanagh lives with his family in a house across from the site, and says his big brother, Charles, noticed something out of the ordinary that night.
"He was driving home from work late Friday night," Pat told the San Francisco Chronicle, "and the next morning, he told me that he had seen a large spotlight, like a motorcycle light, in the middle of the field. No flying saucers or spaceships."
Another purported "witness" to the event, Mark Grant, told KRON-TV he heard strange noises on the overnight:
"It could have been a cat, but it was like a screaming, a whirrr. [It] sounded almost like a bigger cat was being cornered or something and was screaming to try to get out of it. I don't know what it was, but I know it was enough for me to grab my gun and sit there for a while and not go back to sleep for a while."
With the first reported crop circle dating back to England in 1647, the phenomenon now has some 250 formations reported worldwide each year, according to data from the Southern Circular Research which monitors circles found in the United Kingdom.
In 1991, the British duo of Doug Bower and Dave Chorley claimed they sparked crop-circle mania, as they said they created the designs with ropes and planks to mash down crops with their feet.
With many pondering the possibility the designs are the work of aliens from outer space, the recent discovery is bringing people in droves to Solano County, Calif.
Nearby businesses are cashing in on all the attention, with one eatery thinking about putting an alien omelet on the menu.
"We went from a usual $900 day to a $2,000 day," Jessica Godoy, an employee of Valley Cafe, told the Daily Republic. "We are seeing people we've never seen before and people we haven't seen in a long time."
As for the field, people from all walks of life have come to walk in it, snap photos, take measurements, dance, breathe deeply, hum and wave their arms to the heavens. Some are even taking the crushed wheat to plant at home or sprinkle on their ailing body parts.
"I feel vacillations," Connie Pearson, who came from New Orleans, told the San Francisco Chronicle. "Low vibrations. I feel reality, which is a function of agreement. It's very exciting to be here."
Link to the original story can be found here.