Haunted Nightclubs: Dancing With the Dead
Can Nightclubs Be Haunted?
Nightclubs are for the young, wild and rebellious to dance the night away and maybe pick someone up along the way. However, it is not just the young or the living occupying these clubs. Over the past thirty years, there have been more and more accounts of hauntings reported in nightclubs all over the country. Many of the nightclub entities seem to be angry or full of sorrow. Maybe they can't stand the loud music and annoying drunken people, or maybe they are destined to party for eternity.
Masquerade nightclub is nestled in the heart of the south in Atlanta, Georgia. This eccentric goth-rock club is known by many rockers and goth persons residing in the peach state's beloved capital. Heaven and Hell (the first and second levels of the haunted nightclub) feature bands and DJs, with the first floor of "Hell" being the dance club portion of the venue. When people want to take a break from the loud bands or blaring music, they head out to the side-bar area known as "Purgatory". The haunted nightclub draws a mixed crowd of young teens and even some older goth folks. More recently, the Masquerade has become the talk of the town for other reasons besides the show-casings of local musical talents. It has came to be known as a haunted nightclub.
With Gothic decor similar to a Medieval castle, it is no wonder the Masquerade is home to paranormal phenomena. It is said that a ghost haunts the premises. The dark image of a black man who seems to enjoy hanging out in Heaven, between the stage area and restrooms. His image has been seen by employees and customers alike.
Weird goings-on include amplifiers being turned upside down with no known cause, strange noises, and cold spots. One particularly creepy occurrence in the early two-thousands involved a recently inspected staircase that collapsed not long after inspection. No one was killed but it is eerie, nonetheless. Is the spirit that haunts the Gothic club friendly or evil? Or maybe just mischievous? In addition to the mysterious black figure, female screams are often heard by employees, which have been presumed to be those of young women who were tragically killed in the building when it was a mill.
This once turn-of-the-century mill is not haunted by just your typical run-of-the-mill ghosts, it is haunted by something else altogether! As of late, a vampire has been spotted at the Masquerade, stalking the property at night, waiting to find his next young and delicious victim. Many of the club's attendees have noticed his presence in and around the nightclub. Some claim this is just a heist by the club to gain more clientele, while others swear it is true. Is it possible that the nightclub's ghost is also the "vampire" in disguise? Or is it the other way around? Either way, watch your back and your neck when you step into this dark club!
The Castle is another Gothic haunted nightclub located in historic Ybor City, one of the oldest parts of the city of Tampa, Florida. I have been to The Castle on numerous occasions.
The Castle was originally an old cigar manufacturing plant, one of many that made up the meat of Ybor City from the eighteen hundreds through the nineteen-twenties. When you first walk into The Castle, you show your ID and pay the fee as with any normal club, while doing so you will notice heavy chandeliers above you, with a bar to the right and a bar to the left. Straight in front is a dark, decrepit looking staircase that leads you up to the second level. I always enjoyed the second level the most, as this is where the large dance-floor is located, as well as what the haunted nightclub goers call the "Red Room" (a small blood-red room with convenient bar). You will see some interesting-looking individuals in The Castle, including a man named "The Senator" who wears female lingerie and heels and also characters dressed up as Peter Pan and Batman. Drag queens frequent the nightclub on a weekly basis. No one will bother you unless you bother them, keep in mind.
With The Castle being world-famous for its envelope-pushing parties and wild events, it is also becoming known for a particular ghost known as Rex. Rex is a very tall man with long hair and knee-high black boots. Normally he keeps to himself and no one has had a long conversation with him, so he is sort of an enigma at this point. How the ghost rumors began is due to a particular experience of a young woman who attempted to engage in a conversation with Rex. He led her outside, in a very romantic and alluring way, and when she began to feel frightened by his eerie ways, she looked away for a split second and looked back, and he was gone!
The perimeter of The Castle is fenced in and one must go through the club in order to leave, and the weirdest part is no one noticed Rex leave that night. Truthfully, none of the doorkeepers at The Castle even remember taking Rex's identification or money from him! It is speculated by many that Rex is a ghost, haunting The Castle's ominous, dark environment. Still others claim Rex is a vampire, possibly waiting for a willing victim to open to him. This would not be too far-fetched, as many of the club-goers believe themselves to be vampires or volunteer blood to these so-called "vampires".
Ybor City is one of Florida's national historic landmarks and full of spooks. With The Castle having an old historic building as its location, the customers and employees of The Castle are bound to see some sort of paranormal activity! Could it be possible that the energy circulating within The Castle's walls has created its own physicality of energy, in the form of a tall, looming vampire-spirit? Anything is possible at The Castle.
The Lake Club was located in Springfield, Illinois and has been featured on a Discovery television shown known as "A Haunting." This story I found to be particularly frightening, as it involves premonitions and sightings that go beyond the blase cold spots or floating orbs. The club was first established in the nineteen-forties, in an old two story building that had served other business purposes including being a movie theater and skating rink. Back in its hay day, many famous singers and performers played their tunes at the Lake Club, notably Ella Fitzgerald and even Nat King Cole made appearances. The locally famous club unfortunately shut down in the fifties and didn't open its doors to the public again until nineteen-seventy-four. The grand re-opening of the majestic Lake Club would throw the resting spirits into an upheaval and begin a paranormal journey, so to speak, for the new owners and employees of the club.
The newest owner of the Lake Club experienced some frightening noises throughout the old Springfield building: a piano playing on its own, moans, and other strange ghostly sounds. Tricks began to be played on the employees, especially the manager of the club. Items were moved, tablecloths were repeatedly knocked off of tables and onto the floor. That same year, the paranormal activity took a hair-raising and fatal turn. A waitress who was very close with the manager and owner of the club claimed that a floating head had warned her that someone in the club would die within a couple of weeks. Two weeks later, a co-owner of the club passed away at the age of sixty nine. The new owner and employees were quite shaken by the whole occurrence and wanted to rid the club of its psychic, foreboding spirit. As a note on this case, the spirit that haunted the club was given the name "Rudy". Apparently a previous employee of the club in the nineteen-fifties named "Rudy" committed suicide in a room at the club. Everyone believed that this was the main ghost who was haunting their beloved nightclub.
The activity ceased to continue immediately after three Catholic priests blessed each room of the club but weirdly enough, the club caught fire almost twenty years later and the police and firemen believed it was a case of arson. Could it be that the spirits decided to leave and take the life out of the nightclub as they left? Or maybe someone set fire to the building in hopes of sending the evil spirits back to hell.
Tucson. A dry, yet majestic piece of established desert, located in the south of the beautiful state of Arizona. Also home to a very well-known and well-liked nightclub known as Club Congress. One can find reviews of this haunted nightclub all over the internet, most of which involve the description of the club as an "indescribable experience". The vibe combined with the decor of the club and connected Hotel Congress is difficult to beat. The history of Club Congress is an intriguing one, filled to the brim with stories of John Dillinger's hide-outs at the hotel and, you guessed it, ghosts!
One particular room of the hotel hosts the spirit of a man who died by cardiac arrest. the Tucson Mythbusters contacted Club Congress recently to validate some of the myths of hauntings that circulate the city of Tucson and discovered that the manager knew nothing about a man dying of a heart attack in the building; however, he did tell the crew an even creepier story about a young, sad woman who shot herself in room two-forty-two. This is a room that has been known to host obvious cold spots, as well as being host to many orbed photos. Some claim to have witnessed a translucent mist hovering in one particular area of the room, reportedly the same place the woman was found with a bullet in her head.
Another familiar ghost occupying Club Congress is a specter known as "T.S.". Supposedly he was killed during a heated card-game, sometime in the nineteen-twenties. The hotel was actually established in 1919 and, as previously mentioned, played an important role in the capture of the infamous bank-robber, John Dillinger. In the thirties, the hotel set fire and John tried to escape with stolen loot when a firemen recognized his face and the arrest was made. Is it possible that the ghost known as "T.S." could possibly be John Dillinger's ghost, returning to the hotel in search of his loot?
In a Californian city first founded by fifty German families, Chain Reaction seems to be a fairly normal and common landmark amongst the other run-down clubs and bars of the area. Anaheim has its hair-raising secrets, one of these secrets being the ghostly encounters at the Chain Reaction Club.
Imagine this - you are an employee of the Chain Reaction club, closing down the business after a long night of hosting local teen guests and entertaining the masses. You walk to the back door of the club, which faces a dark alley. Suddenly, you hear laughter. It sounds as if the laughter is emanating from the dark alley behind you. You run to the back door and spin around to catch whomever is playing this nasty trick on you. No one is there. You lock the back door for the second time when you hear someone talking in the lobby. Someone must be playing tricks on you. Maybe a customer was locked inside? You walk briskly to the lobby of the club and your night just got creepier, no one is in the entire building except you! What does this mean? Is Chain Reaction haunted? This is the experience that many of its employees have endured.
On a more positive note, at least there are no floating heads or blood-hungry vampires stalking the premises!
© 2011 Kitty Fields