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Haunted Hot Spots

With Halloween approaching, we set out to find the East Bay’s best ghost stories, some of which, witnesses say, are not just stories. Cue the spooky music


Dean Gorissen/agoodson.com

Alameda’s Haunted Aircraft Carrier >>

“The USS Hornet Museum is the most haunted place that I know,” says parapsychologist Loyd Auerbach, a Martinez resident who has been investigating ghostly occurrences for 30 years. “There are dozens of ghosts on the Hornet. The interesting thing is, they seem to be supporting the museum. The occurrences did not start until the ship was cleaned up and restored.”

The Best Little Haunted Whorehouse >>

The building that houses Gay Nineties Pizza Company in Pleasanton was built in 1864 and was originally a brothel. According to the staff, the ghost of the brothel’s madam occupies the place. “She sits in an upstairs window, wearing a blue dress,” says server Conner Close. “Over the years, she has been seen by many passersby from the street below.”

 Clayton-Geist >>

“The geomagnetic fields in Clayton seem to be much stronger than in other areas around Mount Diablo,” says Auerbach. “There was a major poltergeist incident in the 1950s, in which stones fell from a clear sky.”

The Frenchman in Café Van Kleef >>

Owner Peter Van Kleef is convinced his Oakland bar is haunted by a Frenchman named François. “He was a beautiful man who died in the building from a heroin overdose in the mid-1970s,” says Van Kleef. “If he wants me to leave, he’ll turn the stereo off. The stereo is on the same circuit as the lights, yet the lights will stay on.”

The White Witch Trifecta >>

Auerbach says multiple witnesses have seen a ghostly woman in white in the Rose Hill cemetery at Antioch’s Black Diamond Mines and another in Orinda’s Wildcat Canyon. In the Tri-Valley, the legend of the “hitchhiking white witch of Niles Canyon” has been discussed for years, though Auerbach has yet to find a witness.

For more information about Auerbach’s parapsychology courses, go to mindreader.com


For a list of great Halloween-related events happening around the Bay Area, CLICK HERE.

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