by Karen Frazier, Managing Editor
This weekend, Jim and I will be staying in a “haunted” hotel room at an undisclosed hotel. The owner isn’t so sure that he wants it to get out that his hotel is haunted. He feels it may be bad for business.
Still, we had an “in” with the owner, and as such, were given the most “haunted” room in the joint. We have four days, three nights to figure it all out.
While I will respect the inn keeper’s position, I’m not sure if I agree with his assessment, however. I think that hauntings are great for business in this day and age.
Tourism is way down this summer. The economy is in the crapper. And yet, people are still chasing haunts with vigor. It’s cheap entertainment at its best.
Here in the Pacific Northwest, we have the McMenamin brothers’ properties. The two brothers purchase old, dilapidated buildings like the Multnomah County poor farm (the Edgefield, pictured above), and fix them up into destination resorts.
While people most certainly come for the concerts, beer, spirits and cheap lodging (European style rooms go for under $100 a night), they also flock to McMenamins for the haunts. I have never, ever, in any economy, been to a McMenamins that isn’t loaded to the gills with people.
Ghosts are fun. We like to be scared – and ghosts have that creepy factor without being dangerous. If we actually have some kind of an encounter, we’ve got a great story to share with family and friends.
The last time I stayed in a haunted hotel, someone stroked my leg in the middle of the night. Or maybe that was Jim. When you’re in a place that you know to be “haunted”, the old imagination fires on all pistons.
Jim is loaded to the gills with tech equipment. He’s pretty sure we won’t find anything supernatural, because he doesn’t believe in ghosts. But he is going to put forth a good faith effort to either record any phenomena and discover what it actually is.
Me? I’m going to go and see what happens. Maybe nothing. Maybe it will just be a fun weekend with my husband in a location with a spooky reputation. No kids. No dogs. I’m down with that.
That’s the good part about haunted tourism. It’s a win-win proposition. If you never encounter a single spook, you are still immersed in the history and legend of a historic location. If you do encounter one – well then, you’ve got something to tell the kids.
There may be no blogs until Tuesday. I’ll try – we’ll see what happens. If not – everyone have a good weekend. Hopefully I’ll return with stories to tell.