2016 proved to be a particularly tumultuous year for the UFO phenomenon as the enigma once again managed to escape explanation and left us still searching for answers.
The year kicked off with a dramatic indication of what was to come when Hillary Clinton talked about UFOs with a reporter in New Hampshire and expressed a positive take on the subject.
This spawned a wealth of mainstream media stories about UFOs, making 2016 a banner year for serious coverage of the subject, including one tense moment when reporters pressed the White House for insight into Roswell.
As the Clinton story continued throughout the spring and even, briefly, beyond that during the general election, an air of cautious optimism pervaded the UFO research community that a potential breakthrough was near.
However, Donald Trump's surprise victory in November appears to have dashed those dreams and left the UFO disclosure movement in a state of great uncertainty.
The political drama on the ground seemed to be of little consequence to the phenomenon as UFOs continue to appear in skies around the world.
Some of the dramatic incidents that made news in 2016 included a UFO possibly stopping a wind turbine in Poland, craft flying in clusters over a volcano in Mexico, and an anomalous object potentially dissolving a chemtrail in the Paris sky.
Unfortunately, the media also fell for a few suspect cases, particularly a tantalizing UFO filmed over Ohio that generated considerable national interest and a hoaxed 'invasion' in Turkey that turned out to be the work of internet trolls.
Beyond the confines of our planet's skies, UFOs were also spotted several times on the ISS live stream, occurring so frequently that NASA actually responded to the claims that they were censoring the broadcasts.
Additionally, on a few occasions, it was claimed that the aliens themselves were seen in the proverbial flesh, most notably a disoriented ET in Bolivia, a shadowy entity in England, and a pesky creature encounter in Peru.
Area 51 researchers were also treated to a number of new insights into the base thanks to new drone footage of the facility, videos from people who encountered security at the site, and fresh satellite images of the notorious secret installation.
However, ultimately, 2016 ends the same way it began for the UFO phenomenon, with the mystery still tantalizingly out of reach and paradoxically suffocating under a sea of evidence that has yet to yield a smoking gun.
The year ahead will see a few milestones on the calendar, specifically the 70th anniversary of Kenneth Arnold's landmark flying saucer sighting in late June as well as the infamous Roswell UFO event in early July.
Other noteworthy events will be the 20th anniversary of the Phoenix Lights case in March and the 50th anniversary of the Shag Harbour Incident in October of 2017.
While UFO disclosure may be unlikely in the new year, perhaps the series of celebrations surrounding these anniversaries can continue the momentum that the phenomenon appeared to be building throughout 2016.
If Roswell, the Phoenix Lights, and Shag Harbour taught us anything, it's that the next major UFO case could happen at any time, so don't give up hope that 2017 just might be the breakthrough year we've been waiting for all this time.