Did you know the California Theater in San Bernardino is haunted?
A small group of ghost hunters of the Cal-Para Research Organization visited the theater on Saturday night, Sept. 26, to check out “hot spots” where paranormal presences had been detected.
The visit began with a short tour by Owen Sheeran of the theater so the group would be able to find their way in the dark.
With a full moon above, just 24 hours before the Blood Moon, the group visited the stage where a “ghost light” is kept burning 24 hours a day, a theater tradition dating back to the days of oil lamps.
Sheeran said the theater was built in 1928 and has hosted numerous celebrities over the years, many of them pictured on a hallway leading to an upstairs dressing room. Among the top stars was Will Rogers, whose last public performance was here in 1935 shortly before he was killed in a plane crash.
The 1,720-seat theater has run the gamut in entertainment, all the way from vaudeville to a movie theater, and now back to live performances.
Through those years, rumors of ghostly presences have come and gone, and the ghost hunters wanted to check it out.
A visitor was allowed to accompany Cal-Para Director Kd Foreman on a couple of locations.
They made brief visits to the balcony, the upstairs dressing rooms and the large gathering room behind the balcony during the tour.
For the investigation, with all the lights turned out, we began in the Will Rogers bar downstairs where a “hot spot” had been detected.
We waited quietly with Kd’s detection equipment for several minutes, and one of our number suggested a presence in one corner of the bar. However, no one else saw or felt it and the equipment did not respond.
We tried again in a hallway just off the audience floor, again with no equipment detection of anything unusual.
The California Theater can be an eerie place with all lights turned off, except for the “ghost light.,” even without ghosts.
The Cal-Para Research Organization has been around for eight years and has performed numerous investigations throughout Southern California, even one in Highland.
But that’s a story for an issue closer to Halloween.