informational conferences to local haunted
houses, students at UW-Eau Claire can find
something haunting about this Halloween.
Halloween is often associated with unexplainable
things such as Friday the 13th, crop circles and
flying spirits. This year it also will be
associated with Eau Claire.
Anyone who has a desire to learn about the
findings in the spirit world, or even the
findings in their own backyard, might be
interested in the upcoming Unexplained
Conference in Eau Claire.
On Saturday, the Plaza Hotel and Suites, 1202 W.
Clairemont Ave, will be lit up with black lights
and spooky presentations by three paranormal
researchers: Linda Godfrey, Rick Hendricks and
Chad Lewis. Each speaker will cover topics
featuring hundreds of paranormal cases
throughout America, including ghostly footsteps
heard at The Mousetrap Bar, the Ghost of Elk
Lake Dam, the Wisconsin werewolf and the Crop
Circles of Chippewa Falls, Lewis said.
The conference "is a chance for the general
public to see real life X-Files taking place in
their own community," said Lewis, a paranormal
researcher from UW-Stout who is sponsoring the
"The conference showcases the strange side of
the Chippewa Valley from UFOs and crop circles
to haunted places and strange animals," he said.
Hollywood movies like "Signs" and "E.T." have
included aliens and crop circles and "The Ring"
had unusual stories about post-death creatures
fulfilling a deed on earth.
"No one ever thinks (these) creatures are real
because they're in fantasy movies made in
Hollywood," freshman Amanda Baldinus said. "They
don't have a lasting effect on an audience."
Students might have different attitudes toward
supernatural activity after attending the
"Many of the cases revolve around places that
they know of and may have even been to before,
yet they did not know the grisly stories that
are associated with the place," Lewis said.
The conference will specifically explain stories
about "the top five haunted places of the
Chippewa Valley," which are Fire Station Number
10, Sheeley House and Saloon, Kjer Theater,
Lakeview Cemetery and Amy's Ritz.
Students from Eau Claire may be particularly
interested in the Kjer Theater mystery because
it "hits close to home," Lewis said.
"Many witnesses report seeing the ghost of Earl
Kjer sitting in his favorite seat in the
theater, just as he did while he was living,"
Lewis said. "While working late at night,
several janitors have reported seeing Earl
disappear right before their eyes."
Many of the findings are previously considered
to be folklore and urban legends, but these
speakers present credible evidence that is
guaranteed to make skin crawl. "(My presentation
will feature) over 200 slides showcasing the
most haunted places right here in the Chippewa
Valley," Lewis said. "I will show the evidence
that I have collected and provide directions so
you can visit these places for yourself."
"I feel that students will truly enjoy this
presentation because it is a topic that many
students find fascinating," Lewis said.
"Halloween is the time to discuss the bizarre