Ending up at the closed Excitement Park carnival complex in Pennsylvania was honestly a bit of a twisting road. One of my new habits in the morning is to check out the urban legends and hauntings site I’ve bookmarked and look for updates in the areas I’m visiting. Usually they’re pretty mundane and the same story over and over and over again. I swear if I ever hear one of those stories about the bus load of dead kids who will push your car over a railroad tracks I’ll have a mental breakdown. Every once in a while I’ll actually find something that feels right. In this case, it was reports of a wild man that stalked the ruins of a carnival somewhere in the forests of Pennsylvania. It seemed to be a relatively recent legend too, popping up within the last 10 years or so, pretty much springing to life in the digital age.
I don’t feel alone in my home anymore and that scares me. Since visiting the prison and getting the cryptic message, I have noticed things going on here that before I would have brushed off as non-threatening. Lights flickering when I enter a room, footsteps on the stairs when I’m lying in bed, and even now I can hear the sound of something being dragged in the attic. It’s the sound of wood scraping against wood.
Thursday, August 15th
My doctor thinks keeping some kind of log will help with my insomnia, so what the hell. Last night I didn’t fall asleep until 4am. I had to wake up at 6am. Just like every other day. You can see the problem here. This is my life.
I tried to keep the details of my recent research secret from my friends. I didn’t want to be the weird guy in the group, and I also didn’t want my friends to bring up that I was the one who liked to look for ghosts anytime they introduced me at a party. So, I’ve kept my research relatively quiet. One night though, I did end up slipping.
I had a buddy from college over to my house one night. He had stopped back in town to visit family, and since he can’t stand to be around them for more than a few hours at a time, I let him crash on my couch for the night. Ted works for the Illinois Department of Corrections, and we compared the usual job stories, both funny and frustrating. After a few beers the conversation turned to spooky things he’s heard about on the job. He told me some stories he heard about Joliet Prison, and rumors of the ghosts of murdered inmates that stalk the halls.
“Don’t tread where the deer dance as men, for they are neither.”
That was the last thing my grandfather said to me before he passed away. He was feverish and suffering from pneumonia stemming from lung cancer, and I was lucky enough to be in Harlan County, Kentucky on a project with the DNR when I got the call that he was in the hospital.
Sanford, IL Police Archives
Search Results: “Schaeffer Road” OR “Schaeffer Rd”
5 Entries Found List: Most Recent First
11/26/2012 22:38 hrs – Incident Report
OFC J. Dawson responded to disturbance call near corner of Schaeffer Rd and County Line Rd. Caller XXXXX XXXXXXXXX called regarding traffic collision. Caller was frantic and said she had struck a pedestrian who had been standing in middle of eastbound lane. OFC Dawson arrived at incident site and found motorist and vehicle in undamaged condition. Tire marks lead to car indicating the motorist attempted to brake suddenly. No indication of any pedestrian or victim present. XXXXX XXXXXXXXX taken to hospital for treatment re: severe anxiety attack. No charges filed. (Edit: Names removed per current policy. Please see case file 11838 for full report.)
After speaking with McGivern and hearing about Denali, I began searching out other strange stories. What started as a hobby began developing into an obsession. The internet became my greatest ally and greatest curse, because searching for anything remotely related to mystery creatures or weird happenings brings up a fair amount of obviously fake stories and hoaxes.
For as long as I can remember I have been interested in the lost and forgotten. Some of my first memories are of my grandparent’s ranch in the hills of California, where I would use my father’s beat up metal detector to search for old coins and abandoned gold mines.
I never found anything on the property really worth sharing, but it sparked my passion for exploration.
A lot of people in the United States love snow. They have romanticized notions of cozy Christmas mornings and sledding with their families, but ever since I was a teen I’ve hated the winter. Not sure about your feelings on the matter. I think snow is fine when you just look out the window of your heated house. If you end up going anywhere though, you have to push to the back of your mind that you are essentially walking into an environment that will end up killing you without a second thought.