“Fright Night” brings chills

An evening of spooky stories

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Katie Childs

Legend has it that Whitewater Witches dance around the Starin Park tower at night and that once someone goes in the tower, they will never get out.

Katie Childs, Assistant News Editor

The Second Salem Paranormal Investigation Team and Residence Hall Association presented virtual ghost stories for the university and community Tuesday, Oct. 27. 

As one of the final Halloween-themed events to be presented this year, “Fright Night” did well on its promise to elicit chills. Each panelist shared spooky stories having to do with Whitewater’s haunted history as a town and UW-Whitewater’s as a campus.

“I 100 percent think there are some ghosts on this campus. I haven’t seen or heard any myself, but people have told me about their creepy experiences, especially in Wells,” said panelist Rachel Jones.

If listeners weren’t spooked after hearing about the introduction of Whitewater’s possession by the Morris Pratt Institute, the haunted triangle of the city’s connecting cemeteries, the cursed book, or students getting stuck in the Witch’s Tower, they certainly were after this story shared by Rachel:

According to local legend, a woman in white used to appear frequently in the east gardens of what is now Hamilton House B&B on Main Street. The first owners of the house, Sarah Posey and her husband and son, had put painted tiles of their portraits above the fireplace. After the son’s portrait went missing during renovations by new owners, residents reported seeing this garden-dwelling woman in white as well as a young boy at the foot of their beds.

“Sightings of this boy and the woman in white—thought to be Sarah Posey and her son—came to an abrupt halt after the tile depicting the boy’s portrait was found in the east garden and returned to the fireplace. The ghosts were never seen again.”

Those tuning into the live Facebook or YouTube streaming were invited to share their own spooky campus or community stories in the comments. Reports of paranormal activity ranged from running sounds in the hallways of Wells to independently opening doors and moving objects in Knilans. 

“I don’t know if it’s the atmosphere or the history or the kind of people that move here, but something about the city keeps up this paranormal atmosphere,” said Second Salem Paranormal Investigation Team president Kim Bradow. “It’s something that makes the university and the town unique.”

Second Salem Paranormal as an organization researches a variety of community ghost stories in order to share them with others at events such as Fright Night. 

The event wrapped up its evening of spooky stories with a short Q and A from audience members who wanted more details about the legends. 

For further information about paranormal activity in Whitewater, join the Second Salem Paranormal Investigation Team on Thursdays from 6 – 7 p.m. in Hyland Hall 1302 or explore the city’s website.

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