Spooky Tacoma places

By weeklyvolcano on November 6, 2006

Bobble Tiki doesn’t believe in spooks. He doesn’t, he doesn’t, he doesn’t believe in spooks. And yet … on a rainy November night, when the leaves rattle against the fire escape and the computer crashes again and again for no apparent reason, Bobble Tiki finds himself drawn to supernatural explanations. Get a grip, he tells himself. Those lights going on and off? Nothing more than old wiring. That vase that crashed from the shelf? Vibrations from passing trucks.  That Ted Bundy victim dumped in the foundation of a building being built at the University of Puget Sound who now moans in the halls of the building.  Well?

For others, however, the chance of seeing a resident ghost on a stairway, among a local cemetery’s headstones or waving from a window provides an extra reason to live a Ghostbuster dream. There are a couple Tacoma venues where it's rumored you can get your Halloween on past October.

The Pantages Theater, the centerpiece for Tacoma’s Broadway Center for the Performing Arts,  hosts a carved face that looks out on audiences from the top of the stage proscenium.  Some say that it was modeled after the face of founder Alexander Pantages.  Some also say that if you watch that face very closely, its expression will change.  Witnesses claim that the ghost of Pantages smiles at the shows of which he approves.  And when Mr. Pantages doesn’t like an act, his displeasure is equally plain to see. 

Similarly, Tacoma’s Temple Theatre is a source of stories about the sounds of furniture being dragged across the floors of empty rooms, doors and windows later found open when they were left closed, and of luminous apparitions in the balcony.

Will the new Horatio Theater at 708 Opera Alley end up a ghost?  Doubtful.  Erik Hanberg, former managing director of the Grand Cinema, will open his Tacoma fringe theater sometime in February 2007.  His vision of daring, profound theater will most likely succeed due to the influx of urban downtown denizens and rise of intellectual artists pushing boundaries.  Check out the full story at Exit113. â€" Bobble Tiki