Thursday, 26 July 2012

Paranormal conference will explore things that go bump in the night

ENID — Haunted history and things that go bump in the night will be explored and discussed in Enid during the state paranormal conference Aug. 18 at Cherokee Strip Conference Center.

The conference, the first ever in Enid, will be 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tammy Wilson, co-author of the book “Ghostlahoma: Over 100 Years of Haunted History,” said several of the nation’s leading authors on the supernatural will speak at the conference.

“We have no idea how many people to expect. They usually do it in El Reno, and we have had as many as 300,” Wilson said.

The speakers include Troy Taylor, researcher, crime buff, supernatural historian and author of nearly 90 books on ghosts, hauntings, history, crime and the unexplained in America. He presents a dark look at the world of the missing, murdered and murderous women from the supernatural history of America.

Ken Gearhard, a cryptozoologist and field researcher for the Centre for Fortean Zoology and Gulf Coast Bigfoot Research Organization, has investigated reports of monsters and mysterious animals around the world, including Bigfoot, the Loch Ness monster, chupacabras, winged creatures and werewolves. He has appeared on episodes of “Monster Quest” on the History Channel.

Wilson will share local legends and folklore of Enid, from haunted bars to the widely disputed legend of the death of John Wilkes Booth. Enid has a colorful haunted history, she said. In addition to co-writing “Ghostlahoma” she is the founder of  Eerie Oklahoma.

Tonya Hacker looks at the evidence standards of the paranormal field and hosts an interactive presentation of photos, video and other evidence of paranormal activity. Hacker and Wilson have spoken at conferences around the country as well as to Oklahoma Main Street directors about haunted history and tourism.

Other speakers are Ted White, author of “Tulsa’s Haunted Memories;” Chris Harrington, Denton Area Paranormal Society, now relocated to Enid; and Josh Stebbins, an Enid artist who will display his work.

Tickets for the event are $25 and may be purchased online at or by calling (580) 402-6732. Vendor space is available.

“It’s a fun tourism thing for Enid,” Wilson said. “It’s entertaining if you like history and ghost stories. Ken’s stuff is always weird and interesting. He has recordings and pictures that will be interesting.”

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