Saturday, July 27, 2013

Watch Parties and Scooby Gangs: Our Ghost Hunters Debut

It had started to feel as if an eternity had passed since the SyFy show Ghost Hunters had filmed an episode at my workplace The Elms Hotel and Spa.  We waited with bated breath for word of when the episode would arrive and in fact, the last bite we had gotten was that it would air in October.  We actually relished that idea as it gave us time to create a great event and would be rolled in with the Halloween festivities.  The startling reality we would recently learn from this reality show would be that the episode was due to air in two weeks and well, yikes.

So scramble the hard-working folks at the hotel did and threw together a boffo watch party to accompany the airing.  The episode would be appropriately called "Something in the Water"' a nod to the Elms' and surrounding town Excelsior Springs' long, storied history of healing waters.  It would also be the summer finale of the show which hopefully meant it would be a fun episode.  After all, only Keith, as the primary contact for the Elms who was presented the reveal during the filming, knew what the outcome would be.  

I contacted Kansas City Paranormal, my favorite paranormal investigator team, to lead some of the party attendees on a ghost hunt around the hotel following the viewing.  Of course, they are my favorite as one of the members is one of my best friends Ronnie and as I shared my most significant paranormal experience with them (see my post
Ghost Hunting at the Elms), I like to think of them as my own personal Scooby gang.  Soon, the night arrived, our Ghost Hunter packages had sold out, the Grand Ballroom was set for a grand premiere and all of our friends and guests had arrived for the big night.

The ballroom was packed and three giant screens were flickering with
the last episode, the one filmed at Belvoir Winery in Liberty.  Local popcorn guru Bobkorn provided both smoked cheddar and watermelon popcorn and our Elms lead bartender Andrew created some apropo elixirs for the occasion; one bourbon-laden libation aptly monikered Truman's Ghost and another emerald concoction called the Green Phantom.   These cocktails came in handy for soothing nerves as Keith was a bit nervous for his debut, though I knew he'd be fabulous.  And sure enough, when the show debuted, Keith was indeed flawless, the hotel looked marvelous, the show was a hoot and I even managed a cameo in the show myself and didn't make a fool of myself to boot. 

The successful viewing was complimented by the lively ghost hunt we did afterward.  The Scooby Gang led us to and through all of the noted areas including the show-highlighted rooms 500 and 501 as well as the Tavern and the lap pool.  The guests joined in, using both their own and the team's instruments.  Ghost box sessions were utilized, voices were heard; chills crept up spines.  The flashlight test yielded even more evidence, as it flashed on and off on its own in answer to the team's questions.  One of the guests in the tavern got some of the most interesting results as one of her photos yielded what looked very much like a skull face.  It was a suitably eerie way to cap off the evening.

The airing of the Ghost Hunters episode was a great and entertaining coup for the hotel and helped
ensure that a haunted reputation would remain with us for years to come.  I remain an open-minded skeptic during investigations but when it comes to the idea of ghosts residing within the Elms, I admit I relish the idea of the hotel being haunted.  The spirits keep it lively and are hopefully watching over us to help keep the Elms alive for another 100 years.


Lisa Mandina said...

Let me tell you, that is the only time I have watched that show, I'm not a fan of it, and actually heard something that I believed was a possible bit of evidence. The show was sooooo good! And this is fun to read, I just talked about a "Scooby gang" in my last book review!

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