The Travel Channel's Paranormal 911 will feature The Olde Park Hotel
Ballinger’s Olde Park Hotel has become the go-to destination for ghost hunters from around the globe. Last year Hollywood actor and paranormal investigator Chad Lindberg, who has starred in such feature films as The Fast and the Furious and The Rise of the Zombies, as well as appearing on popular television series, including CSI:NY and Supernatural, came to Ballinger to conduct his second ghost hunt at the hotel. At the time, Lindberg commented on the paranormal activity at the hotel, “The last time we were here, this place was really active. It’s an awesome place to come investigate the paranormal. This hotel has been in Ballinger in one form or another for over 100 years and it’s just an amazing place.”
In 2018, well known ghost hunters Brad and Barry Klinge of Ghost Lab on the The Discovery Channel conducted a ghost hunt at the hotel. Brandy Green of Ghost Hunters International and author Daniel Klaes visited the hotel as well in April of 2018. Dylan Lane of Ghost Tech is just another one of the myriad of ghost hunters who have descended on The Olde Park Hotel.
The destination has become something akin to a pilgrimage every year for paranormal investigators. The Travel Channel’s Paranormal 911 recently made a visit to the hotel and will air the episode on January 25th. It will be the season 2 premier episode.
What is it about The Olde Park Hotel that harkens to paranormal investigators from around the globe? It could be the activity that is regularly caught on EVP recorders (Electronic Voice phenomenon) or the numerous ghostly images that are caught on camera. The LaFave’s say that there have been items thrown across one of the hotel hallways. It’s a haunted house that gives even the most seasoned ghost hunter goose bumps and raises deep-seated fears.
The LaFave’s take it all in stride. Both are easygoing schoolteachers who teach in San Angelo. Connie is an English and Journalism teacher. Both of the LaFave’s are military veterans and accustomed to high-stress situations. But they don’t necessarily consider walking among the paranormal to be high stress. Dan speaks of the paranormal in his informative, cerebral, matter-of-fact, mild mannered way as he casually talks about the encounters he’s had with the ghosts over the years. Connie also seems to find a peace walking among the restless undead.
Dan was asked how they cope with the fame and attention of owning what is considered by many to be one of the most haunted locations in the world, “This is almost our 4th year in buying and operating things in this Ballinger historic building. With that, the 2020 spring season is very busy and jammed packed with overnight group bookings and special events through June. We only operate things here at the Olde Park Hotel on weekends and we have booked up nearly every weekend in March, April, and May already. We both do have normal professional jobs as high school teachers in the area and this does make it hard to balance our weekly lives with everything we do here on weekends, but we really enjoy meeting people who come to either visit, stay overnight, or attend the special events we have here. We have Chad Lindberg and Lindsay Senter coming back on Saturday May 2nd to do another exciting Face Your Fears event. We also have Brandy Green (from the past hit TV show Ghost Hunters International) and Daniel Klaes (paranormal author/paranormal explorer) featured before on the Most Terrifying Places in America on the Travel Channel with his very haunted The Hinsdale House in New York) coming for special overnight event on Saturday April 18th. This is their first visit here. Balancing everything here gets crazy sometimes with how busy it is, but Connie and I love every minute of what we do here meeting and hanging out with everyone. We feel that all the business we do also helps Ballinger a lot because we bring people from all over the country here and they go all over town to do things.”
Connie says that maintaining a balance is the key to success for them, “We have learned to balance our time with all of our duties and set priorities so that we address everything. We know how important it is to prioritize things while you own a business. At the same time, we never forget what goes into making our students successful and prioritize our duties as teachers as well.” Dan says that they receive calls, emails and messages about the hotel almost every day, “Through word of mouth, mainly personal paranormal experiences here, more and more people are saying and claiming the Olde Park Hotel to be one of the most haunted historical buildings in the state of Texas and the United States. This building has quickly gained a reputation to this since we opened its doors to the public nearly 4 years ago. Why the place is so haunted is still the big question, but it is through many personal encounters by people coming to visit and stay here. On average, we are in constant discussions with people about group overnight bookings and scheduled events on a constant weekly basis through email, phone calls, or through social media resources like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Yes, sometimes everything can seem overwhelming at times balancing our lives, but we really enjoy everything with just how popular the Olde Park Hotel has become and we love sharing its history and ghosts with everyone who comes. We also love that everyone also enjoys Ballinger and it’s unique history as well. The Olde Park Hotel and Ballinger have a unique story to tell.”
Dan could only give hints about the upcoming episode of Paranormal 911, “I can’t say much about my Paranormal 911 show premiering 2nd season episode except that it involves a very intriguing and scary incident that occurred to me and a few other military police in the Air Force. This occurred over 30 years ago and was something that I will never forget. That was what led me to wanting to explore the paranormal world more. This episode, unless rescheduled last minute by Travel Channel, should show Saturday January 25th, at 8 pm central time. It will be an exciting Season 2 premier episode for sure. With how busy we have gotten at the hotel, the haunting paranormal activity has increased for people visiting. We never know what will happen next for people visiting. There have been more sightings of apparitions in the building by other people also.”
For more information about the hotel and tickets for upcoming events, you can go to their Facebook page, “The Haunted Olde Park Hotel Ballinger, Texas.” You can also visit their website, www.oldeparkhotel.com to find out more information or book your own ghost hunt.