Mystery orange dots blink on and off over Allston

Lizzie Raze spotted the dots around 8:20 p.m. So did Doug G. Both, of course, want answers, and here at Answer Central, well, we have no clue.

Chris wonders: Space hipsters?

The Maltz suggests: could be an RC Drone.

Doug G., however, doubts that theory: Seemed too high up. They looked like they were over Brookline, maybe JP.

But the Maltz retorts today's drones can get pretty high.

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      Comments

      Meteors?

      I was at Packard's Corner and watched them come from the southeast over Brookline towards the river. One disappeared over the Brookline Village area and the other looked to have gotten to the river before it faded out.

      No. The speed of the Earth of

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      No. The speed of the Earth of about 66 thousand m.p.h. means they are never visible for that long, although there have been some long lasting ones like that one over Russia a year or two ago that was still only a matter of seconds.

      lanterns

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      I saw them and think they were charcoal Japanese, Thai style lanterns

      Agreed

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      I've seen floating paper lanterns drifting down Comn Ave in the past.

      Want to believe you

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      I want to believe your lantern theory very badly as it does appear to be an extremely logical choice. The lights seemed to be originating from the Cleveland Circle/BC area as they seemed to fly from that direction. The lights seemed very bright the farther away they were which then supports the theory that they were lanterns. Could it have been a sorority/fraternity celebration? Perhaps. Could it have been a family celebrating an early chinese mid autumn festival? Perhaps.

      I feel that it needs to be said that prior to the sun setting, several bright white plane shaped objects were seen flying the exact same route/speed as the orange lights were seen later to do. Oddly enough, they were also flying in pairs, triples and singles. Now I only say they were "plane-shaped" and not simply planes as they had no color variations or visible logos (like normal commercial jets), they were SILENT and they had no blinking lights on them whatsoever (which commercial jets typically have).

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      Want to believe you

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      I want to believe the lantern theory very badly since it seems like the most logical of choices. The lights were very bright when we spotted them. They seemed to be coming from the direction of the Cleveland circle/BC area heading parallel to Commonwealth avenue near the Harvard Ave intersection and continuing past BU towards the river. I didn't see any officially "burn out" as lanterns would typically do but I did notice one or two seemed to be flickering a bit. Most were very steady lights. Could it have been a sorority/fraternity celebration? Perhaps. Could it have been a family celebrating an early mid-autumn festival? Perhaps.

      However, I feel it needs to be said that earlier in the evening, prior to full sunset, several bright white "plane-like" objects were also seen flying the exact route and speed as these lights were seen to do later in the evening. I only say "plane-like" objects because of the following; they did not possess any visible color variations as commercial jetliners do, they were SILENT unlike all the various sized aircraft that I've ever seen flying over Allston, they had absolutely NO blinking lights on them. Additionally, I would like to point out they were also flying in patterns of pairs, triplets and the occasional single much like the lights were seen to do later when it was dark.

      Whatever they were, they were cool and created quite a stir and debate in my neighborhood.

      I do hope, however, if they were lanterns, that the folks who were responsible for the display are cognizant of the fact they pose a very large fire hazard. And in fact, there are cities and towns nearby that have banned them. http://www.boston.com/yourtown/somerville/articles/2012/01/19/sky_lanter... . Given that Allston just suffered a nine-alarm fire on Wednesday night, you can't blame a girl for being a bit twitchy.

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