Newly Discovered Haunt Spots

This is what it’s all about.  In the world of paranormal travels, the holy grail, the golden goose, the ticket to Ghost Hunters Live is discovering a ghost story that no-one has heard of yet.

This moment may be brief, but it can be so bright. **

It’s practically guaranteed that from the time you tell someone about reports of paranormal activity to the time it shows up on the granddaddy of on-line listings, Shadowlands, will be split seconds.  The time from that post to the haunt being added to the exceptional Unexplained Research map is not even worth measuring.  Those folks are on top of it and we’re indebted.

Allow me to bask for a moment or two because that’s about all we’ve got.  Aaaaaannnndddddd….. Done.

We’ve got two, count ’em, two newly discovered Haunt Spots on our latest tour, “A Forlorn Phantoms to Floozies Caper”.  This tour is pretty eclectic.  It covers 2 very well known haunts and the 2 we sussed out just for you.  The tour takes you on a road trip north of Milwaukee, into Ozaukee County.

Digging into the rumors was so much fun.  All it took was a hint and off we went.  We talked to neighbors, dug into history, visited libraries, and generally poked around until we made nuisances of ourselves.  But, that’s what it took. Not only did we discover some rich ghost stories, but there were other pay-offs.

Pay-off 1:  We captured some interesting EVP’s at one of the new haunts.

Pay-off 2:  The people who manage the other location are going to let Haunt Spots Explorers poke around inside.

Bottom line pay-off:  Now it’s your turn.  We had our fun.  The stories are recorded and the Caper is up on the website. Grab a couple of friends and go check it out for yourself.  Just in time for Halloween.

Happy Haunts,

Susan Scot Fry

http://www.CaperCompany.com

** Kudos and thanks to Rush for these lyrics.  Hey, go with the pros.

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71 Great Wisconsin Haunts

I give in!  They’re all yours!  I can’t hold back these great haunt spots any longer. You want ghost stories, you’ve got ghost stories. You want to explore these places yourself – go for it!  We’ve done the work, it’s time to share.

All you have to do is google “haunted Wisconsin” and you’ll find the same lists that got me kick started.  Since then, I’ve researched, interviewed, snooped and poked up more haunts.  Huge kudos and creds to the devotees who compiled these lists, but I can’t tell you the thrill that I get when I find a ghost story that isn’t already on one of them.   It’s like striking gold.

Researching Haunt Spots is exhilarating, exhausting, frightening and fascinating.  On these all-day scouting trips, we’ve managed to visit over 150 places in Wisconsin that are reported to be haunted.  That’s a lot of ghost stories.

So, I dig into how to actually find these places and we go and check them out.  They are rarely easy to find.  After all that work, though, some are duds.  You can’t get anywhere near the place – or once you get there, there’s nothing much to see.  Or it’s private property.  Or the business owner doesn’t want you anywhere near.  Combine that with a thin or frankly boring ghost story and we can call that nixed.

But some – oh, some are mind-blowing.  ‘Hard to find’ becomes a quest.  The story is alluring.  The place is atmospheric and accessible.  Bonus if my research partner captures an EVP or an odd image in a photo.  I jump for joy when the batteries in my camera die.  So far, I’ve collected 71 Haunt Spots.

After we have these experiences, I string 4 of them together into a tour route.  A road trip.  A Caper.  You would think with 71 keepers that that would be easy to do.  Well, it’s do-able, but in the meantime, you are missing my very favorite cemetery in all of Wisconsin.

Huh?  That’s an injustice.  Just because it’s too far off the beaten path to hook into a route?  Well, no more!

Here’s the deal – Instead of only offering all-day, multi-haunt tour routes, I’m going to start offering single destinations.  That’s right.  I can finally get you out to my favorite cemetery in all of Wisconsin!  Just because I haven’t been able to tie it into a longer route yet is no longer an excuse for withholding the creepiness.

I’ll still have full routes coming out, but in the meantime – Have At!  Create your own route.  Grab a buddy or two at the last minute and instead of a movie, pop in the audio story for a real Wisconsin paranormal adventure, follow my turn-by-turn directions and go have some fun.

I’ve got 4 single destinations ready to go and can have 4 more with another days’ work.  I’ve got another full Caper coming out in the next couple of weeks and can add 4 more single destinations at the same time.  Then, I guestimate that I can start giving you new destinations every 2 weeks or so.  That’s the audio story and tour itinerary with all the insider stuff – everything.

Meeting with my great web-guy this afternoon.  He’ll figure out for me how to put the single destinations up on the website.  Can’t be too hard.

This is so exciting!  Finally, I get to share all these great paranormal adventures with everyone.  Why didn’t I think of this before?

(insert forehead slapping sound…)

Happy Haunts,

Susan

Apparently, the Answer is “No, It’s Not Too Soon” for One Filmmaker

On December 2nd, 2009 a Haunts Blog posting asked the question, “When is it too soon to include a particularly heinous crime destination in a Haunt Spots tour?”  One of the examples was notorious Wisconsin murder, Ed Gein.  Although convicted of one single slaying, he gained huge notoriety for his hobby of digging up other corpses and creating trophies and keepsakes from their bones and skin.  The formerGein farm property up in Plainfield, WI is rife with stories of ghostly activity.

An article in the January 2, 2010 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel contained an answer to my blog question.  The article, entitled‘Ed Gein:  The Musical’ will have world premiere, is by Journal Sentinal reporter, Chris Foran.  He describes the film as a ‘ dark and somewhat controversial comedy’.  Uh-huh.  I’m a ‘dark and controversial comedy’ fan along with the best of them, but I suspect I will take a pass on this one.  Not even the YouTube trailer was enough to hook me.  It’s not graphic by any stretch, but it did induce a little queasiness.  It may have been the singing.

I stand by my earlier post.  It’s not my personal story, but in a Haunt Spots tour I’m privileged to tell it and get to choose how. Apparently, filmmaker Dan Davies thinks so too.  More power to you, Dan.  I think.

Happy Haunts,

Susan Scot Fry

Caper Company Tours LLC

The Spirits of Christmas

I am privileged to hear wonderful and personal ghost stories, especially at this time of year.  They range far and wide in tone — from mild to bone-chilling.  Most often during the holidays, they are downright sentimental.

It seems that when our need for human contact and kindness is most keenly felt, our loved ones sometimes find a way through.  They may be just a breath to let you know that you are still loved and that there’s a connection that will never die.  Sometimes, there’s more — much more.

These stories delightfully cross all bounds of age and experience.  I have a sentimental love of nursing home stories where a long gone (from this realm, anyway) wife or husband will make a comforting nighttime visit.  Or where a person will swear that they felt the familiar fur of a loved and lost pet brushing against their leg just when they needed them most.

In some stories, it’s not always necessary to have known the person.  There are connections from ghosts who  find a corporeal being who has an attractive spiritual energy.  There may be unfinished business or a simply a desire to connect which finds you giving of yourself versus receiving.  In the stories I hear and my own personal experience, the best always seems to happen when you release fear and are open to this moment of peace.

Your connection may arrive gift-wrapped as a memory.  Try letting it linger.  It may transform into a connection that you both will cherish.  Once you’ve each offered your gifts of solace or love, you say goodbye.  Seems to be all the karma that’s required.

When a sparkle of otherworldly joy may be just the right gift this year, it could be  waiting for you.  Say hello to your Christmas spirits and share some quiet meaning.  And keep telling your stories.

Wishing you peace, love and happy haunts,

Susan Scot Fry

Orbs?

Too scary to put on a Haunt Spots tour?  Not likely.  There are, however, places Caper Company Researchers encounter on research trips that are tough to turn into tour destinations.  Not because they were boring or inaccessible private property, but because our experiences were hard to handle.  I know, I know – get over yourself, Susan and just write that bad boy up!

One place not only made my skin crawl, but yielded some favorite before and after photos.

Before

Before

See – nothing but a shadowy stage floor.

After

After

Gulp!

The story of this haunted location is of a young girl being terrorized and killed.  As we were scoping out the interior, we alternated between cajoling to provoking.  The photo with possible orbs came during provoking.  Could this be the killer and his victim?  Or is it dust?  I’m always skeptical of orbs, but it’s easy to get carried away with the possibilities.

Happy Haunts,

Susan

My Favorite Halloween Costume

My birthday is 5 days before Halloween.  Other than “that explains a lot, Susan” it also means that, as a kid growing up, one of my birthday presents was always my Halloween costume.  Even at a young age, I knew that was a bit of a cop-out-rip-off birthday present, but I also knew that money was tight.  I was so happy to be getting a costume.  It also meant that every birthday was also a tiny costume party of one, starring Me.  Now, for a kid who basked in the spotlight, this guaranteed audience of ooo’s and aaah’s was the best present ever.

So, my favorite Halloween costume?  I honestly don’t recall.  Well, I vaguely remember a Wonder Woman outfit.  But regardless, I’m sure it was one of those off-the-rack, highly flammable, ties-in-the-back and comes with the plastic mask with eye holes and that thin elastic string thing.  And the accompanying adoring fans.  And cake.  My imagination supplied the golden lasso.

Sheer bliss occurred if my birthday also happened to fall on a Saturday.  In the small California town where I grew up, post Saturday morning cartoons were followed by “Creature Feature” afternoons.  I could sit in my costume and watch Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney and – oh, who was the guy who always played Van Helsing…. Peter Cushing!  Talk about formative.

Flash forward to today.  I’m still the same little kid reveling in all day feasts of ghost stories only the costume I’m wearing now if my laptop and Creature Feature is now called Haunt Spots.  One thing hasn’t changed in all these years.  I’m still grinning from ear-to-ear.

Oh yes, and my costume now?  Some days, like today, it’s a robe and pj’s because I jumped out of bed, booted up and started typing.  Which means I’m dressed up like a home-based business person.  And grinning from ear-to-ear.

Happy Haunts,

Susan