While the annual Halloween parade may not be on, that gave throngs of ghouls, ghosts, superheroes and princesses all the more reason to head downtown for the annual trick-or-treating event on this afternoon on Main street in Oneonta. Above, Brendan DeFalco, a brother with Chi Phi fraternity, hands out candy outside Tokyo Japanese Cuisine to Oneonta’s Reese Robinson and Rowan and Wyatt Keto. At right, Benjamin Reese shows how to walk like a robot in his homemade robot costume. College students were invited downtown to help hand out the candy in front of local businesses as part of the renewed Town-Gown work groups, part of the city’s Survive, Then Thrive initiative. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SARURDAY, OCTOBER 31
HALLOWEEN FUN – 10 a.m. – Noon. Bring painted or carved pumpkins to enter in pumpkin contest, winners announced at 10:15, followed by costume contest. Prizes available. All ages welcome. Richfield Springs Public Library, 102 Main St., Richfield Springs. 315-858-0230 or Click Here
VOTE – 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Early Voting open. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Click Here for info.
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, OCTOBER 30
TRUNK OR TREAT – 4 p.m. Decorate your cars and bring the kids for fun activities from building a spider, pumpkin carving, make a ghost, and of course collecting candy. All stations are sanitized, 6 feet apart. The Railroad Inn, 28 Railroad Ave., Cooperstown.
VOTE – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Early Voting open. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Visit www.otsegocounty.com/departments/board_of_elections/index.php for info.
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25
PUMPKIN GLOW – 6 – 7 p.m. See artistically carved/decorated pumpkins for this Halloween season. Wear a mask, social distance, be safe. There will be no indoor gathering this year. Cooperstown Village Library. 607-547-9777 or visit www.cooperstownart.com
VOTE – 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Early Voting open. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Visit www.otsegocounty.com/departments/board_of_elections/index.php for info.
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, OCTOBER 4
GHOST TOUR – 6 – 7:30 p.m. Hear tales of the mysterious happening over the years at historic mansion, including the ones identified by Ghost Hunters Halloween special on SyFy network. 1-hour after-dark tour. Hyde Hall, 267 Glimmerglass State Park Rd., Cooperstown 607-547-5098 or visit hydehall.org
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2
DAY OF THE DEAD – 10 a.m. – Noon. Experience Dia De Muertos and the Latinx community by telling stories in Spanish & English, participating in family activities, enjoy traditional food, more. Cooperstown Village Library. 607-547-8344 or visit www.facebook.com/VillageLibraryOfCooperstown/
Erratic rain throughout the evening led to the cancellation of Oneonta’s annual Halloween parade, but all manner of ghouls and ghosts made their treat-seeking rounds at local homes and businesses this afternoon and evening. Above, Devin El, Leilani El and Ziyen Giles passed City Hall on their treat-hunting mission, with Lizzette Hopkins and Edward Giles, Maryland, in tow. Inset at right, Oneonta’s Jessica and Paul Benzaleski arrive downtown with their children Adalia and Reilly ready to take home some sweets.(Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
A three-generation tradition is alive and well at Jackie’s Restaurant in Milford where Jackie Folts, left, her sisters and the next generation were in full Halloween regalia today. Right of Jackie is sister Brenda Alton, Jordyn Scott, Brooke Sisson and sister Sue Sisson. The ladies pose with Bones and his dog, No-Barc. After the photo, the mother of the family, Sandy Chase of Cooperstown, showed up and posed with Jordyn. When her daughters were kids, Sandy said, they would say “oh, mom,” whenever she would encourage them to celebrate Halloween. Now, she said, the sisters are enthusiastic about it on their own. (Jim Kevlin /AllOTSEGO.com)
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for THURSDAY, OCTOBER 31
PARADE – 5 p.m. Dress your best and show off your costume in this years Halloween parade down Main St., Cooperstown.
PUMPKIN GLOW – 6 – 7:30 p.m. Bring your carved pumpkin to enter in a contest or just to display to the trick-or-treaters. After the sun goes down stroll through the park and admire everyone’s handiwork. Huntington Memorial Library, 62 Chestnut St., Oneonta. 607-432-1980 or visit www.facebook.com/hmloneonta/
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 30
CARNIVAL – 5 – 6 p.m. Bring the kids to enjoy annual Halloween Carnival followed by trick or treating through Residence Halls. Hunt Union Ballroom, SUNY Oneonta. 607-436-2514
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26
HAUNTED HOUSE – 6 – 10 p.m. Get your heart racing as you explore house filled with terrifying creatures, specters, more. Recommended ages 12+. Admission, $2 or donation to Toiletries Closet. Oneonta Teen Center, 4 Academy St., Oneonta. 607-441-3999 or visit www.facebook.com/oneonta.teencenter
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, OCTOBER 25
PARANORMAL – 7 – 9 p.m. & 10 – Midnight. Join seasoned investigator for fun, education, exploration of paranormal possibilities of the opera house. Cost, $20/person. Earlville Opera House, 18 E. Main St., Earlville. 315-691-3550 or visit www.earlvilleoperahouse.com/halloween-events
LIBBY’S BEST BETS
By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
T’is the night for tricks and treats! Stroll through downtown and show off your costume before you hit the streets to collect your sweets! In Cooperstown, the parade kicks off at 5 p.m. on Main Street. In Oneonta, 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 31.
Get a head-start on the candy collecting as you trick or treat through the Historic Village. Admission free to kids, accompanying adult with donation.
1-5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, The Farmers’ Museum, Cooperstown. (607) 547-1450.
Hunt for spooky specters with the NY Shadow Chasers Team. Tickets, $15. 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, Harris Memorial Library, 334 Main St., Otego. (607) 988-6661.
Can you survive a trip through the scariest haunted house in county? Admission $2, or bring item for teen toiletry closet. 6-10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, Oneonta Teen Center, 4 Academy St., Info (607) 441-3999.
Race through the streets of Cooperstown in costume as part of 19th annual Coop Loop 5k & 10k. Prizes for scariest, funniest and best costumes! 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27, Clark Sports Center, Cooperstown. (607) 547-2800.
Avoid the cold and trick or treat indoors at Mall-O-Ween! Then stick around for a Halloween-themed Zumba dance party! Noon-2:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27, Southside Mall, Oneonta. Info (607) 432-4401 ext. 101.
Carved pumpkins on display, plus treats and ghost stories by Bruce Markusen. Drop off at 1-6 p.m., Glow 6-7 p.m. Cooperstown Art Association, 22 Main St., (607) 547-9777.
In Roseboom, Dousing Ghost-Buster’s Job Is Done
By JAMES CUMMINGS • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
ROSEBOOM – In the 187 graves behind the Roseboom Historical Society was the spirit of a 39-year-old woman who died in childbirth, ghost hunter Susan Miller of Cherry Valley avers.
Until lately, that is.
“She wouldn’t move over,” Miller reported at a Thursday, Oct. 17, pre-Halloween presentation to the Historical Society, which occupies the former Baptist church in this hamlet.
“Imagine carrying this torment for over 100 years,” said Miller, author of “Time Between: The Hauntings of Cherry Valley,” and “Chasing Sarah,” described as a ghost/murder/mystery novel.
After pleading with the spirit, Miller was able to convince her to leave, affirming that the cemetery is now “clean.”
Contracted by the Historical Society to map the graveyard, the speaker described her use of dowsing, a skill also used in determining where to dig wells, in her work.
Locating gravesites through dowsing requires intuition, she said, and the assistance of a pendulum and metal rods.
Once a body has been located, Miller seeks to communicate directly with the spirit to determine factors such as gender, age, and cause of death.
When the Roseboom Historical Association reached out to Miller said she approached the Historical Society project with enthusiasm. “I grew up seeing ghosts,” said the woman, who has been dowsing since 1971.
Although involved with an ongoing project at Cherry Valley Cemetery, Miller began working in early October on the Roseboom plot with friend and fellow dowser Linda Leckenbusch.
It wasn’t long before they mapped out the area, using flags to mark each individual.
“We were surprised by the number of bodies in the plot,” said Leckenbusch, who has been dowsing for about a year.
Now that she’s finished the Roseboom plot, Miller is refocusing on the Cherry Valley Cemetery and anticipates similar projects in the future.
When asked about the project, attendee John Webb, Cemetery Association of Roseboom president, said,
“It raised a lot of questions.”
That include who exactly is buried there, whether an epidemic – yellow fever, perhaps – had added to the census, he said.
“It’s something we will pursue as an association,” he said.
That task may prove difficult, however, because the plot served as a potter’s field – a burial site for paupers – as early as the 1820s.
Most of the people buried there would have been tenant farmers, too poor to afford funeral services and, thus, placed in unmarked graves.
“It’s our responsibility to mark the spot,” says Webb. He hopes to work directly with the Historical Association to facilitate the installation of a grave marker for the deceased.
By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
WORCESTER – Dennis Enright loved the Worcester White House Inn.
“We were friends a long time,” said owner Jim Buelow. “I thought of him like a brother.”
So much so, that Enright still hangs around Room 217, where he was living when he died at age 63 last November, according to his friend.
Since, Enright has joined the many ghosts that haunt the famed stopping place.
“When you come into his room, he’ll flush the toilet to say hi,” said Stephanie McAdams, a long-time waitress at the inn. “I’ve seen him in the window looking out over the parking lot.”
(Editor’s Note: At that moment in the tour, sure enough, the toilet flushed. Dennis, a former ad salesman for this newspaper, would have known the reporter and photographer.)
“He never locked his door,” said Beulow. “So now, housekeeping or a guest will lock the door behind them and come back to find it unlocked.”
He’s not the only ghost in the famed hotel. “When we bought it 11 years ago, there were always stories about it,” said Buelow. “We’ve had at least three sets of paranormal investigators come through.”
The innkeeper was personally aware of the hauntings when he bought the hotel, having already stayed in Room 307, known as “The Ghost Room.”
He was working at the former Worcester Creameries, “and there was a big snowstorm,” he said. “I was living in Amsterdam at the time, and didn’t want to drive home, so I went across the street to the Worcester Inn.”
He got the key to 307, but when he went to open the door, he heard guests inside. “There was music and people talking and laughing,” he said. “So I decided I was going to crash the party.”
But when he opened the door, no one was there. “In the middle of the night, I woke up and my bed was shaking really hard,” he said. “In the morning, it had been moved 6 inches. You could see the marks in the carpet.”
He and his wife, Lurline, heard the patter of children’s feet on the second floor when there were no children among the guests.
McAdams reported seeing Mrs. Helen Weiting, who built the theater that bears the family name across the street, walking down the third-floor hallway in a long black Victorian gown.
“By by the time she got to the end of the hallway, she vanished,” she said. “But she’s very nice; I always say hi to her.”
Other spirits make their presence known in more mischievious ways. “One night, one of the waitresses was making a drink at the bar in the dining room, and one of the wine glasses flew over her head and into the sink,” said Beulow.
Another time, a group of paranormal investigators set up their cameras outside of the unoccupied Room 218, only to see a man with a skeleton horse head open the door, look around and then close the door. “He repeated it five or six times,” he said. “But when we took the footage to show our friends, it wouldn’t play again.”
And Enright isn’t the only newcomer to the Worcester Inn’s spiritual side.
“We had a customer a few years ago named Tom who would come in three times a week,” said Beulow. “He always had a beer, then a salad and then he would order his meal.
“But when the waitress came back out to take his order, he was face-down dead in his salad.”
On Saturday, Oct. 19, the Inn held a ghost-themed dinner, where Buelow presented the history of the hotel hauntings.
Tina Breslau, who works with the Institute for Spiritual Development in Oneonta, did a reading, trying to summon forth the Inn’s spirits.
“She turned to me and said, ‘Jim, Dennis wants you to know he still thinks of you as his brother’,” said Buelow. “And he wants you to know that Tom is here and that he’s fine.”