Monday, March 18, 2013

Ghost-hunting authors: Halloween on St. Patrick's Day

I wrote a book about ghost hunting that came out in 2007.

But it was not until 2013 that I went on a ghost hunt. 

Fun in and of itself made all the more so because my fellow ghost hunters were also fellow authors.

We came together for the 45th annual Children’s Literature Festival at the University of Central Missouri. By day, we are collectively speaking to the 4,200 students who will attend.

 me, Roland Smith, Brad Sneed, Michael Spradlin

But by night, or at least the night of 3/17/13, we went in search of the supernatural. 

We were a sizable group—perhaps 40 total.

with nametag: Darleen B. Beard; in red scarf: Brenda Seabrooke; 
in beret: Roland Smith; in disbelief: various

Ghost huntress Alane Ferguson was our intrepid guide. 

Alane demonstrating the laser thing 
(green twinkles on lampshade and curtain)

And she came equipped. She distributed her various gizmos (heat sensors, electrical sensors, infrared camera, etc.) among us.

the doohickey I got to use

We set out for the third floor of Yeater Hall, a dorm built in 1940 and allegedly haunted by at least two ghosts.

  Antony John and me

The first ghost we saw:

The first and second floors of this building are in use by students (who are on spring break). But the third floor has been off limits since 2000. We got special access because we, well, have no special paranormal training whatsoever.

We spent a little over an hour spread out along the dilapidated third floor and the numerous rooms off of it; most still contained basic furniture such as wooden bed frames and dressers. The green and red lights of our detection devices dotted the otherwise dim hallway.

It turns out that dorm bathrooms abandoned 13 years ago look 
strangely similar to dorm bathrooms in active use.

And we were, it seemed, not alone.

Things happened. 

Things none of us—even the science writers, as far as I know—could explain.

Things including the following:

  • hallway lights that were off suddenly flickering
  • dark blotches (some said figures) appearing in a patterned laser light display
  • a warm hallway cooling down considerably in an instant
  • most startlingly, flashlights turning on and off and rolling off tops of dressers without (living) human involvement

Dorinda Nicholson, Brenda Seabrooke, Vivian Vande Velde in mirror 
observing a flashlight that (no joke) turned on and off by itself...many times


Some among us would say yes. Including me.

 Henry Cole, teacher Casey, me, Antony John in light

  Henry Cole, teacher Casey, me, Antony John in dim

1 comment:

Antony John said...

Fun times, indeed, Marc. Good to have ghost hunted with you :)