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Friday, February 17, 2006

A Haunting: The Lake Club

This is a live blogging event. I'm watching this show on Discovery right now. I think it was first on last month sometime. (Discovery Channel Store: A Haunting: Lake Club Horror DVD.)

Paranormal activity. I've heard various versions of this story all my life. Now, I'll finally get the real deal.

The outside of the building on the show looks nothing like the Lake Club of Springfield, Illinois. It's in a downtown urban setting with sidewalks. Obviously, the outside scenes were shot somewhere else. Our Lake Club was off the beaten path. Sort of. No sidewalks, anyway. The inside looks more familiar.

First opened in 1941. Big bands. Big names. Nat King Cole.

Re-opened in 1974 after being closed for several years. The year I graduated from high school. Known for its live entertainment.

By the way, the place had a fire several years ago and has since been leveled. So, obviously, the inside scenes were shot somewhere else, too. Sometimes I drive by there and the hair on the back of my neck stands up.

The manager guy is in the back room. Place is closed. No customers. Drafty cold. Goes into the basement by himself. That's a big "no no."

He's flipping switches on the fuse box. Hears something. Like someone was right behind me. Very frightening. Camera angle makes it even more frightening. Loud noise. Someone yelling. Indiscernible.

Commercial break. Whew! My heart.

Back. Goes running up the stairs. Runs out the door. Decides not to tell anyone.

Nothing for weeks.

Manager guy is there alone. Again. After business hours. Strange noises. A din of people talking. Couldn't make out what they were saying. Started carrying a rosary to protect him.

Fuckin' shit. I just saw something.

Hello! Is anybody there. Walking. Walking. Walking. Carrying rosary.

Fuck. Guy with a sawed off pump-type shotgun. Black and white super fast flashback type image.

Manager guy is standing on the stage. Stage lights. He's got a nice little 38. And his rosary.

Commercial. Forty minutes to go.

Sidenote: Hey, kids. Before open mic and karaoke nights, we had the Gong Show. Sunday nights were Gong Show nights at the Lake Club. Yeah, I did more than my fair share of Joni Mitchell songs on Gong Show night. Got gonged every time, too, dang it.

Okay, it's back. The owner walks in. Setting up for the next night. Safe is open. Money on table. Manager walks in. What's going on? Manager tries to explain. Scared.

Strange events become more frequent. The two men share their experiences with a trusted employee. Waitress. She didn't believe. Just something fun to talk and laugh about.

One morning a salesman visits the club. Selling a bookkeeping system. Suddenly, a glass flies off the bar towards the salesman. Ducks. Glass shatters on the wall. Salesman walks out without making a sale. Obviously, that adds credibility to the story. A salesman giving up a sale. Eh?

Manager and owner. What should they do? Can't close the business. Too much invested.

Waitress goes back to the office. Very uncomfortable. Ooh. She's unnerved. She thinks she's nervous because they've been busy.

Fuck. Guy gets it her face. "[inaudible] going to die." Fuck. The back of his head is wide open. Then, he's gone.

Commercial. It's only 9:30. Is this an hour show? I have to go to the bathroom. I'm too petrified. I wish someone would come and get me. I mean, a real person that I know. I just heard the floor creak in this house. Will somebody at least please call me. (Added: I'm in the farthest away place from the bathroom in this house and all the lights are off; I shoulda brought a flashlight.)

Back. Waitress believes she has just seen a ghost. She just stood there. She was in a state of shock. She was in terror. Panicking.

Owner says go back in the office and sit down. No!!!! She's taking the rest of the night off.

She comes in the next day. Describes what she saw to the owner and manager. But, she can't say what the ghost said.

The owner pays a visit to the club's long time caretaker. A hippie like guy. Caretaker: It sounds like Rudy, a former bartender. He's got a picture in a photo album.

Owner takes the pictures to the waitress. Looking at the pictures, she says, this is the man I saw in your office.

Rudy worked there at some point. December 1958. Police raided the place. In 1968 Rudy was diagnosed with cancer. Accused of steeling from the club. Rudy snapped! Puts the barrel of that gun in his mouth. Pulls trigger. At the club!

Rudy was a Catholic. Owner thinks he's trapped between the planes of life. Scared.

Waitress is carrying a secret. She believes someone is going to die.

Commercial. I still have to go to the bathroom.

Back. Busy weekend night. Compressor for the beer loses pressure. Owner goes into basement to fix it. Waitress looking worried. Lights off in basement. He's got a Bic lighter! Goes over to where the kegs are. Hears something. Picks up a tap off the wall. Fuck. I just saw somebody pass behind him. Compressed air blasts. Stuns him. Flips his Bic. Looks around.

He's convinced the haunting is real. Embarrassed to discuss it with his land owner.

Land owner suffers a fatal heart attack. Waitress has sorrow. Great relief that it wasn't owner or manager guys. She now shares what the ghost told her. They comfort her. They comfort each other.

Did Rudy have something to do with the heart attack. Owner is scared. Thinking about getting a priest.

Ooh. Air shot of Springfield! But, not.

A high school friend of the manager is a Roman Catholic Priest. Priest guy believes. There's reality there. Priest feels it. There's something here. Priest wants to explore alone. From the bottom of his feet to the top of his head, he knows there's someone with him.

Commercial. There can't be much more left to this show. I'm really holding it, now. Will someone please call me.

Priest returns to the Lake Club with two colleagues. To perform a blessing. Put the spirit of Rudy to rest. Crosses. The sprinkling of the Holy Water. I never heard this part, by the way. Walking through the place. Three priests. Owner guys behind them. Entering the most dangerous area in the building. Mini micro flashbacks. Sprinkling of the water.

Rudy. Gun. Mouth.

These prayers can make a spirit angry. Main priests says, Father, we have to leave this room, now!!! All these men go running outside.

Owner guy is freaked out. Waiting outside. Waiting. Waiting.

Okay. Going back inside. Pleasant clarinet and piano music. Very quiet. Coldness is gone. Father believes Rudy has heard their prayers. Rudy was stuck in time. He didn't want to be forgot. Rudy went where he was supposed to be.

No more paranormal activity. The popularity of the club begins to wane, though. Closed six months later. Credits rolling.

Posted by Marie at February 17, 2006 10:00 PM


That was fun.

Posted by: Rob at February 18, 2006 10:21 AM

Very good, especially from a Springfield, Illinois reader's standpoint!

Despite my skepticism about many things, there's a part of me that tends to believe in ghost, although I'd be darned to understand how ghost could exist.

I find it very interesting.


Posted by: JeromeProphet at February 18, 2006 11:26 AM

hehehe it is 1:55 am and we are watching it for thefirst time, i read the commercial breaks to my wife as they happen when you wrote them. We do have a firm belief in ghosts in fact we have been in haunted homes and hotels. When the priest buddy tells them it could blow up i loved the fear in the owners face.

Posted by: itisspencer at March 17, 2006 1:58 AM

Ghosts aren't real.

Posted by: jon at September 14, 2006 11:43 PM

hello my name is jennifer n i leave in a apartment n ive been having funny nosies n my bathroom shower it turns on n the lights keep turning on n off it feels like someone is in this apartment is in old building since 1920s

Posted by: jennifer at June 22, 2009 1:48 PM

after watching the show kinda freaked me out because the bar they showed on tv was a bar two blocks from my house in Norfolk, Va across the intersection from the norfolk scope. than i read that is was film in a similar location lol

Posted by: lee w at August 10, 2009 2:08 PM

Love that show!

Posted by: at September 18, 2009 10:02 PM

Neat story.

I don't believe it, and I don't believe in ghosts.

But neat story.

Better than ghost hunters. Give it that much credit.

Posted by: Scott at September 19, 2009 12:10 AM