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The rise in popularity of ghost hunting across the nation has made its way to the spiritual town of Taos, where ghost hunting tours of historic Taos Plaza are being offered by New Mexico Research and Investigation of the Paranormal (NMRIP).
Led by Melody Romancito, NMRIP’s two hour Ghost Walking Tours are especially popular around Halloween and provide background on the history of the locations that are alive with paranormal activity.
Romancito said that she and others have had many personal and paranormal experiences on ghost walks at several historic Taos locations along Bent Street, Ledoux Street, and Kit Carson Road, among other locations. In addition to walking tours, Romancito and NMRIP have conducted several paranormal investigations and captured evidence of activity at several historic buildings in Taos including Moby Dickens Bookshop, John Dunn House, Old Holy Cross Hospital and the Governor Bent House and Museum over the past five years.
“I think that anywhere humans have lived for any amount of time, it’s likely to create paranormal activity. Taos has its share of broad-spectrum paranormal experiences; there’s a lot going on here,” Romancito said. “Most of those experiences are wonderful but there is an interesting, complex side to it that will definitely brush up against you in the dark.”
Romancito routinely takes her Ghost Walking Tour groups to the Old County Court House, Teresina Lane, Bent Street, Ledoux Street, Kit Carson Road and cemetery, haunted hotels such as Taos Inn, and shops such as Red Cat Melissiana which is said to house an underground tunnel once used as an escape.
Romancito said she receives a variety of guests on her tours — from skeptics to believers. Her goal is not to prove anything, but to relate and impart stories that add more depth about Taos’ fascinating history.
Tours are $20 per person; prices are reduced for large groups and families with children. Walking tours start from the gazebo in Taos Plaza at dusk. Dress warmly and wear comfortable walking shoes.
Call in advance, as walking tours are arranged by appointment. Cameras and ghost hunting equipment are allowed. Call 575-613-5330 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to book. For general information, including results of investigations in Taos, visit ghostsoftaos.wordpress.com or nmrip.com.
In addition to Ghost Walking Tours, there are several hair raising Halloween events scheduled now through Oct. 31 for children and adults.
From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, the Harwood Museum presents “Halloween at the Harwood” which is inspired by Halloween and Dias de los Muertos (Day of the Dead, Nov. 2).
Guests are encouraged to dress in costumes as their favorite deceased artist and find the many skeletons in the Harwood Museum’s collection. Renowned artist Ken Price will exhibit his Day of the Dead Shrine. Storytelling, art making, face painting and other family-friendly activities will take place at the free event.
Then at 7 p.m. Oct. 30, the Harwood presents Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” at the Arthur Bell Auditorium, in collaboration with Emerging Pictures. The classic thriller is $5 for both Members and Non-Members, in honor of Harwood’s 90th anniversary. Those 18 and under are free; however the movie may not be appropriate for young children. Tickets can be purchased at Harwood or by calling 575-758-9826.
From 7-10 p.m. on Halloween, the Adobe Bar in historic Taos Inn will host a Halloween Party with KKIT radio.
The Adobe Bar is one of several locations in Taos Inn where paranormal activity is often reported. The hotel will have a costume contest with prizes and live music by Bone Orchard. This is an all ages show.
Historic Taos Inn will also host their annual Días del los Muertos event on Nov. 2. Visit taosinn.com for details.
Taos Mesa Brewing, just a few minutes from Taos, is hosting a “Black Cat Soiree” at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31 with live music by Big Swing Theory, followed by John Biscello and his Theatrical Toreadors, along with burlesque pin up girls, “Hell on Heels.” $10 cover at the door.
Taos Mesa Brewing will also celebrate “Dias de los Muertos” from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Nov. 2 with a ceremonial altar, aerial arts, fire show and music.
KTAOS Solar Center will come alive on Oct. 31 with their Halloween Bash from 7:30 p.m. to midnight. Funk based jam band 8 Minutes to Burn along with electronica music by Conscious Kalling and D.J T. Rust are part of the 21 and over event. Drink specials and costume contest.
Entry is $5. Tickets can be purchased online at ktaos.com.
Haunted house seekers of all ages can walk a haunted yard and trick or treat trail in Arroyo Seco on Oct. 31. The haunted yard and house is open from 5 to 10 p.m. and the first 100 people to walk through the door will receive a glow bracelet. The event is located at 505 N.M. State Rd. 150, House No. 101. Bring flashlights.
Tickets are $10 per person, and can be purchased by calling Melissa Bryan at 575-776-3141 or email@example.com.
John Dunn Shops, home of the Moby Dickens Bookshop and John Dunn House, where paranormal activities have been reported, invites all Halloween-goers to dress in costume and join in the party. The free event begins at 7:30 p.m. Visit johndunnshops.com.
Taos.org offers a complimentary, downloadable self-guided tour of paranormal and historic hot spots in Taos called “Hauntings, Hangings, Murder and Mayhem.” Visit taos.org and click on “tours and workshops” for details.