Sunday, May 24, 2009

TAPS PARANORMAL BOOT CAMP

Yesterday, my sister, Maureen, and I went to Ontario CA. We had heard that TAPS was having a class on Paranormal Investigations and afterwards there would be an actual investigation held at the Granada Theater. Which is said to be very haunted.

Thought you may find it interesting so come along and I'll take you through the night.

TAPS is a well known paranormal investigation group. They have a show on TV called Ghost Hunters. Some of you may have watched it before.

They started out in Atlantic GA but grew and expanded to other areas. There is one team now located in CA.

TAPS decided to hold a class or a "Paranormal Boot Camp", as they called it.

As we walked into the theater, the first thing you noticed was how old it was.

Clearly it was a beautiful theater in it's hay day.



Down in front of the stage, was a table and on it was a lot of the tools used to investigate paranormal activity.

They have cameras, video cameras, audio recorders, heat sensors, flash lights, infrared items and lots of other "tools".



I was a bit surprised by how costly some of these items can be. Some cost hundreds of dollars for one item. A few even run in the thousands.

Since any "legit" paranormal investigating team never charges a fee all the expenses for investigation must comes out of the investigators own pocket. It can be a very costly hobby.


These were the two investigators teaching the class. Brett Griffith on the left and Syd Schultz on the right. If you watch the show, they may look familiar to you.

They look like normal guys, don't you think? Not some crazy psychos. They also were both very friendly and nice.

They were more then happy to take pictures with you. I think many people came to this class because they watch the show and these guys are "stars" to them.

Most really respect these guys. They both are known investigators and on the up and up. They do not try to scary people or make you think something was there when it wasn't. They don't have gimmicks or special effects.

They are quick to debunk anything they feel is not real. They claim the reason they do Paranormal Investigations is to try and explain why things happen. They search for reasons such as weather, damaged pipes that make sounds in the wall, the building was built over power lines and that causes lights to turn on and off, animals living in the attic or basement causes things to be knocked over or dust causing orbs in photos.

It's the things they can't explain away that they call true evidence.

This is the main theater part. Many people have claimed to hear talking over near the walls. While we were there we didn't hear or see anything in this room. Other then the lights kept going on and off and the sound got crazy a few times. But it is an old theater and these things can happen.

However, Syd claimed that the week prior he was there with some of his team members and they all heard lots of talking and noises coming from this area.

I did notice there are a few orbs in my photo. Now it could be dust, after all this theater is old and I'm sure very dusty. Or it could be what Syd heard while he was there last week. Who knows.

This is another shot of the main room. The original seats have been removed in this are.

The theater was built back in 1925 and was known for Vaudeville shows and showing the latest movies.

It is now used as a church on Sundays and often rented for classes and conferences durning the week.

Upstairs there are office rooms and the projector room.
This is just another shot with more orbs. This was taken before most people got there.

Again, could be dust or could be spirits. I'll let you decide.

I have to admit I didn't feel one thing in this room. No temperature changes, that feeling of someone in back of you or like you are being watched. Nothing!

My belief are these are not orbs but either dust or moisture showing up. However, I can say it was a nice evening, not raining or over cast. Plus this theater did not seem to be very dusty at all. There are no carpets, drapes or cloth on the chairs.

I'm telling you this so you can decide for yourself what you think is in the photos.

The class was for 5 hours. We learned everything we could. We learned about what equipment can be used, how to use it and when to use it.

We learned how to start up your own ghost hunting group. The dos and don'ts of investigating. How to keep records, how to investigate the buildings past history, writting up reports and what to look for when dealing with the owners or occupants who claim to have witness activity in the building.

As well as many different reasons of what could be the cause of things heard, seen and felt. As I said, the reason for Paranormal Investigations is to try to find reasons for why things are happening. Then to weed those reasons out and find unexplainable things that go on.



We went up to the 2ND floor where back in the 20's it housed an illegal abortion clinic.

In the halls people have claimed to have heard women crying, children running up and down the halls, voices asking for help, hand prints on the windows showing up and babies crying.

So we all sat down, got quiet, put up the equipment that would pick up on temperature changes, any vibrations from someone walking, changes in the electro magnetic fields, video cameras and audio recorders were also used.

Slowly questions would be asked out loud. Things like "Is anyone here with us?" or "What is your name?". As well as "What year is it?" and "Why are you here?".

We heard nothing. We saw nothing. Then one girl noticed the temperature reading was dropping. It was getting colder and colder in there.

They say that a spirit will use a lot of energy when they are trying to contact us. That when the energy is taken by the spirit they leave a cold spot where it was taken from. This will cause areas of cold spots or make the room feel colder.

After about 15 minutes, way off down the hall, we heard a woman's voice crying. We heard this three times. One time was like she was screaming in pain or in great anguish.

Someone even went to check around in other rooms and outside to see if anyone could have been making that sound. They didn't find anyone.

After 1/2 hour we had to move on.

I have to admit it gave me a very uneasy feeling just being in that area. A sort of sadness took over me. I think just knowing of all that went on there bothered me.

I wanted to get out of there and was happy when our time was up and we had to move on.
This was one piece of the equipment we used. I forget what it was called but it's super sensitive to anything that crosses it's path. If there is any type of movement near it a loud sound goes off. The closer you get the louder it goes.

When we first went up to the hall, no one was anywhere near it and it was going off. We were all to far away for it to pick up on our movement and set it off.

But, once we started our investigation it never did go off again.
This is a photo showing the other end of the long hallway where we heard the cries coming from. You can see the guy walking down there to check the area out.

Can you see the large orb in the photo? Could just be a coincident or it could be the spirit of the women we heard.

After hearing those cries and that scream, I have to tell you I was a bit creeped out by this large orb.
This is a small room we walked through to get to the projection room. It's said that a man and a woman have been heard up in the projection room.

The woman was killed by the man and she would hide up here from him and he would go up to find her.

They claim voices have been heard, the projection will go on by itself, knocking can be heard, cold spots felt and even the toilet that is up there flushes on it's on.

Only the toilet has not worked for years and is now drained.
The room is pretty small up there and the reels are very big. We were told the last movie that was shown in this theater was Friday the 13Th and to this day the film is still on the projector.

As we went in we were told the group just before us had a lot of activity going on.

So we wondered if we would have anything happen while we were there.
This is the old panel that was used durning the 20s to turn lights on and off and open the curtains.

While we were in there the investigating equipment was once again turned on. For awhile nothing happened. Then we heard a loud noise. Like someone had dropped a pipe or maybe a large flash light. Everyone confirmed it was not them.

The room started to get cold spots. We asked for some kind of a sign if someone was in there with us. Then not once but, twice the toilet flushed. There was no water, just the sounds of the toilet flushing. It was very strange.

No voices were heard, no taps felt and no other proof there was anyone there with us.

It was odd though the toilet flushed and then that loud sound happened right after we asked for a sign though.

Oh and in case you were wondering, someone brought up the fact they thought the flushing sound could be from the bathroom two floors down being used. So we had someone go check, no one was in the bathrooms and everyone in the whole place was accounted for as being in their areas of the building doing an investigation.
This is the large reel with the movie Friday the 13Th on there. We asked why it was still there. The guy who worked at the theater said he didn't know but the story he heard was the guy running the projector saw a man in the room with him. He claims the man walked through the door that was locked. He seemed to be looking around. Then he went away.

The guy was so scared he ran out of the room, told the manager what happened and then left. He never returned to his job. Since other employees have heard and seen unexplained things they were to scared to go up and remove the movie. So it is still on it all these years later.

Is the story true? I don't know. I have no real reason to doubt it. But then again, I can't prove it either.

This door leads to an office where it is said that back in the 50's a man who worked there died. He would always bring his dog to work with him and when he died his family took the dog to the pound and put it to sleep.

Many many people claim to see the man and his dog walking through out the building. Others claim to not see anything but they hear a dog growling or barking.

We didn't see or hear either of them. Though I do wish I would have seen or heard a ghost dog. After all, I am a big animal lover.
This was taken on the 3rd floor where in the 1970 a legal abortion clinic was operating.

Like the 2ND floor it is said that voices, crying, screaming and even laughing can be heard.

We didn't have anything happen here. Not one peep.

There were a few other places we went to but didn't have any type of activity happen so I won't bother to write about them.

Both Maureen and I felt we had a great time. We enjoyed the class and while we were not 100% sure what to think of the investigation it was still very interesting.

The bad part about it was we won't ever know what people caught on their video cameras or voice recorders. I wish they had a follow up meeting so everyone could share what they found or didn't find.

Now I know a lot of you don't believe in spirits or ghosts and you may think I'm nuts for even liking this kind of stuff. Some may even wonder how I, as a Christian, could believe in such a thing.
>Well, I have had many unexplained things happen in my life. Things that not only I have experienced but others who were with me did too.

I can't say I'm 100% sure that paranormal activity is from the after life. But, I do like investigating and trying to prove or disprove things. It's not scary to me. It's fun, a hobby so to speak.

I also talked to my Pastor about it. He told me he saw no harm in it as long as I was doing it from an entertainment aspect. He also said the Bible does speak of spirits among us.

When I asked him if he felt by doing these investigations I could be exposing myself to evil or Satan. He said he didn't think so. He felt, as I do, that as long as I have Jesus in my heart and God is on my side then Satan can not have power over me, unless I let him. Which of course I wouldn't.

So I feel safe. I think it's very interesting and I'm open minded enough to believe that there can be things that we as humans don't understand. So it could be true. Then again, it could all be a bunch of bunk. Who knows. Can anyone really say for sure?

Unless you yourself have an experience then you can always claim there is no proof. But once you do have something happen, well it's pretty hard to say it's not real.

So do you believe? I would love for you to share your experiences with me. I know a lot of you don't like to talk about this kind of subject in an open forum so please feel free to email your stories to me.

Also, can you please leave me a comment to let me know if you like these kind of posts or if you would prefer I didn't share them with you. If you do like them, I have lots more I can share. If most of you don't like them then I won't bother to post about them.
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17 comments:

Susan said...

I would love to hear more about your experiences. I think it's really interesting. I would have loved to take that class.
Hugs, Susan

Anonymous said...

Hi Joanne, I read your blog daily and love it. The funny thing is that my husband is REALLY interested in the Ghosthunter and Paranormal State kind of stuff. I was reading this and chuckled. He wondered what was so funny on a "craft" blog. I showed him your post and I am under orders to tell him when you post on this subject again. So from me and the hubs...keep up the good work! Sally & Jim Hackney sjhackney@yahoo.com

patinamarie said...

Keep 'em coming. I love the paranormal accounts.

Keeps me glued to the page - book or blog!

I'm not an "investigator" or anything, but have had weird things happen in my 41 years. (you commented once on my blog about one I posted)

I've read about the walking tour in Portland, but too chicken to go by myself - nubby said he'd go, but said he doesn't want me to be scared.... My boys say, no way!! And my girlfriends, I think, would think I'm crazy!!! Some, for even considering ghosts/spirits are real and others for religious reasons.

Please, share more. You're obviously more "in-tune".

patinamarie said...

...hubby said....

Darned I-phone spellchecker!!!! Like a ghost in my phone with a mind of it's own. LOL

Glenda said...

Well you know how I feel about the subject.
Keep the coming. I have had some recent experiences and know there is something that goes on that you can't explain.

So, tell us more and will be tuning in.


CIao

Sara's Sweet Surprise said...

Not only do I enjoy reading these types of paranormal posts... I have friends that I email to notify them when you've written a ghostly adventure.
I think we've all experienced one of those "what was that" moments.
When my father passed away I had many unusual experiences that I couldn't debunk. I can't help but think it was my Pop's letting me know in my grief he was with me. I felt it very comforting.

I wished TAPS could investigate the antiques shop you went to with the radio playing the mystery music and the small child you spotted and then vanished. Yup, that would be a good one to check out. Maybe you could leave a request on the GH website.
Sweet wishes,
Sara

Sares said...

It sounds like you had a wonderful time. I've watched Ghost Hunters frequently on TV and love the show. I've been fascinated the last few years by these shows but don't know if I'd be up for a Ghost Hunt of my own. As I get older, I tend to be less freaked out by these things.

When I was younger, I had a Great Aunt that was a medium. The family would ocassionaly get together and TIP the table. That's where you have 3 people on each side of the table, my Great Aunt would "summon a spirit" and ask it questions and the table would tip. It would tip once for yes and twice for no. It came up with some very interesting answers. There was one time we had a bad experience though and my Great Aunt seemed to be overcome by something bad. She recovered though, but since then I've always been a bit freaked out by this process. Even more so when one time we "supposedly" had the spirit of a recently deceased friend of my sister on the table and he answered some very specific questions about something that had happened only minutes before and he seemed to know about it. It was a bit startling. I've never put my hands on the table to participate, only watched. Those that did said they can feel the pull of the table. There are others that have said they see see transparent hands under the table. Just a little family lore for you!

I enjoy hearing these stories so please do keep sharing. It sounds like you found a few things in that old theater.

I think anyone that says they don't believe in ghosts is a bit closed minded. How could you possibly believe that there is nothing else out there than what you can see. After all, most people haven't actually seen a million $, but it exists.

Glad you had such a great time and I look forward to reading more!

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

Joanne...You think those are dust spots?? Really?
IF you do than I feel..sort of silly and a tad embarrassed...

Sares said...

Hello again Joanne,
I've just been reading the stories you have linked on the bottom of your post and they were fun to read too.
The family pictures on my blog are just photos that have been handed down. A new scanner made it easier to load them into the computer. I have done a bit of my family tree, but haven't gone back further that 3 or 4 generations. I wouldn't really know how to do any extensive research. Family history has always interested me, knowing where I came from.

Nickname unavailable said...

I am going there on a tour this Friday (May 29th) with the manager of the bldg...Dave. I will let you know what happens. Excited to go.

Barb said...

That class sounds very interesting.
Thanks for the tour.

I have had some "experiences" so I do believe.

hugs,
Barb

Rechelle ~Walnuthaven Cottage~ said...

I love me a good ghost story anytime! I grew up in a home filled with activity so you know I enjoyed this post. It's so funny since my family knows not to bug mom on Wednesday....as I'm watching Ghost Hunters!

syd said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
syd said...

A friend of mine did a google search and found this wonderful blog. I am so glad you had a good time. We are going back to the Granada theater July 11th. I would love for you to post this on our myspace. www.myspace.com/tapspara101 under comments. You are the reason we do this class.

Syd

also if anyone is interested in taking the class and investigation they can go to www.tapsbootcamp.com.

Again Thank you!
Syd

SURFER DAVE said...

thank you everybody that came to the granada theater in ontario,calif..for the taps booth camp..had a great time,and hope to see all of you again soon! i've been the care-taker know for 1 and a half years,and seen alot of cool stuff happen here at the granada! we always like hearing storys about the old 1927 theater.so kept them coming this is my e-mail if anyone need to get a hold of me! surfirdave@aol.com thanks again....will see you in spooksville... p.s. write me for some great video and pix's

Anonymous said...

thank you everybody that came to the granada theater in ontario,calif..for the taps booth camp..had a great time,and hope to see all of you again soon! i've been the care-taker know for 1 and a half years,and seen alot of cool stuff happen here at the granada! we always like hearing storys about the old 1927 theater.so kept them coming this is my e-mail if anyone need to get a hold of me! surfirdave@aol.com thanks again....will see you in spooksville... p.s. write me for some great video and pix's

Lori Smith said...

Your information answered a lot of my questions, especially the one about Paranormal and Religion. I am glad you talked to your Pastor about this; and even more, I was happy to hear his response. I have recently signed up for a ghost hunter's boot camp. I am excited.
Thanks
Lori