Carpe Weekend: On the hunt
By Jason Freeman firstname.lastname@example.org October 24, 2012 10:01AM
Members of TnT Paranormal Investigators LLC will host Paranormal 101 on Oct. 25 in Lockport. | Supplied Photo
JAY’S OTHER WEEKEND PICKS
PARANORMAL ACTIVITY: The Illinois Ghost Society will host a program at 7 p.m. Thursday at Chicago Ridge Public Library, 10400 S. Oxford Ave. The IGS is a paranormal research institute that collects evidence of paranormal activity. Group members will display the equipment used by ghost hunters and will discuss ghost-hunting terminology. Information: illinoisghostsociety.com, (708) 423-7753.
HAUNT DETECTIVE: Former criminal investigator, local author and historian Ray Johnson will discuss his book “Chicago’s Haunt Detective” (Schiffer Publishing, Ltd.)
at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Bridgeview Public Library,
7840 S. 79th St. Johnson will sign copies of the book after the presentation. Registration: bridgeviewlibrary.org,
Updated: November 26, 2012 6:09AM
If you love meandering through pitch-black hallways and craning an ear to the silence for sounds of unexplained voices and mysterious knocks, then perhaps ghost hunting is right for you.
But be forewarned: Although it can be rewarding, investigating the paranormal takes patience, tenacity and a dedication to working long, unpaid hours.
“There’s a lot of work,” said Melissa Tanner, founder of TnT Paranormal Investigators LLC.
“You could spend 20 to 24 hours per case going to the investigation, doing the data review and having team meetings, so there’s a lot of personal time that people dedicate to do this.”
The rewards come not in money — TnT Paranormal offers its services for no charge — but in the satisfaction of helping others, Tanner said.
“A lot of people have something going on and they’re not exactly sure if they’re going crazy,” she said.
“They’re not sure if what they have is going to harm them, and so there’s that customer-service side, if you will — that portion of helping people and educating them on what is paranormal and what isn’t.”
Representatives from TnT Paranormal, which is based in DuPage County but serves most of Northern Illinois, will discuss these and other basics of ghost hunting during a program titled Paranormal 101 from 7 to 8 p.m. Oct. 25 at the Gaylord Building, 200 W. 8th St., Lockport.
Attendees will learn about the different types of hauntings and the tools ghost hunters use to document hauntings. These tools include thermometers, digital cameras, video recorders and audio devices.
TnT members also will discuss orbs, light anomalies and “matrixing,” which is the misidentification of something ordinary as something paranormal.
“My group does (debunk),” Tanner said. “We try to go with the logical, man-made or environmental factors first over the paranormal.
“If someone’s reporting bangs at night, is it just their water pipes? We try to go with the logical explanations first.”
When logic fails to explain a ghostly event, though, members are drawn to the paranormal.
Electronic voice phenomenon, which describes disembodied voices caught on audiotape, usually are the best pieces of evidence and the hardest to debunk, Tanner said.
“Audio (evidence) is definitely more prevalent than the others,” she said.
“The skeptics are always going to say, ‘Anything can be doctored,’ and that’s probably true … but audio seems to be what more people are able to document.”
Paranormal 101 is free, but it’s not recommended for ages 12 and younger.
After the program, attendees will be able to ask TnT members questions and share their own stories of the paranormal.
“It’s cool because the rest of the audience can hear those stories and interact with each other,” Tanner said. “That’s a neat part of it.”
Ghost hunting may be tough work, but somebody has do it. Why not you?
Information: (815) 838-0755, tntparanormal.com.