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Mysteries Of Los Alamos Explored In New Podcast

on February 21, 2019 - 8:55am
Courtesy image
By Bonnie J. Gordon
Los Alamos Daily Post

Something weird and creepy is going on in Los Alamos and it’s not mysteriously appearing potholes ... it’s Secret City Files Podcast.

Since its launch in October the podcast, produced by three young Los Alamos writers, has been creeping out listeners with tales featuring mysteries and secret lore from Los Alamos and northern New Mexico. The podcast is more than halfway through its first season. It broadcasts every two weeks. All the episodes can be downloaded, not just the current one.

Aria and Matt Villareal and their good friend Madison Weaver are the voices and the brains behind the podcast. Matt is from Los Alamos and Aria’s grandparents live here. They’re married and have known each other their whole lives. Weaver met Aria in Hawaii when they were both living there and decided to join her best friend in New Mexico.

“The majority of the stories come from local events like the Las Conchas Fire and local legends,” Matt said.

Aria compared the story arc to the X-Files, mysterious happenings being covered up by equally mysterious forces. 

The intro episode sets things up. Tess, a college student, is cleaning out the home of her grandfather after his death. She discovers his secret notebook, filled with science and stories. Grandpa was on the trail of a big mystery. Without giving away the plot, the intro episode takes us to the tunnels beneath Los Alamos National Laboratory, which were declassified in 2013.

“The project in the podcast, Project Poltergeist, is based on an actual LANL project involving neutrino research,” Matt said.

The three creators behind Secret City Files all work at Los Alamos Medical Care Clinic, and spend weekends on the podcast.

“Lots of editing goes into it, because we’re always cracking each other up,” Aria said. “We all write fiction and we all contribute to the scripts. It’s great, putting everything into action.”

The three started by recording on a cell phone, but they’ve since upgraded to a Yeti microphone, Weaver said.

Aria plays Tess and Weaver plays her friend Allison. Matt does the introduction and the guest voices. They all do sound effects. The product is scary and well produced, so nothing breaks the mood.

Each episode is 15 to 20 minutes long. It’s plenty of time to get lost in the story.

“If you have an interesting story to share, get in touch,” Matt said. “We’re always looking for new stories.”

One of the episodes already completed features the Taos Hum. Who could resist that?

Listeners can find Secret City Files on Google Play, Pod Beam and Stitcher. These apps can be downloaded to any phone, including IPhones. Those of us on IPhones will have to wait for it to be available on ITunes. Episodes also can be downloaded to a computer using the above aps. If listening is not you’re thing, the scripts are published at Contact the creators at or on the website.