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Escondido Library Gets Into The ‘Spirit’ Of Halloween

A display of artifacts related to Lewis and Frances Ryan at the Escondido Lib...

Above: A display of artifacts related to Lewis and Frances Ryan at the Escondido Library in this undated photo.

The Escondido Public Library is similar to other libraries in many ways. But one quirk makes it stand out: it’s haunted. But, instead of hiding that fact from patrons, the library staff has a decidedly “whatever brings em in the door” attitude about the whole thing.

“There’s been some concern maybe people are going to want to amateur ghost hunt here at the library and quite frankly as long as people are not disruptive or hurtful to other patrons or to the library property, I invite people to come in for different reasons, we’ve been a Pokemon Go location, whatever gets people to come into the library to enjoy it as a community space I’m for," said Monica Barrette, the senior librarian.

She said the library has a history of disembodied voices, books inexplicably falling off the shelves, and elevators going up and down unprompted. She has enlisted the help of well-known San Diego spirit investigator Nicole Strickland, is founder of the San Diego Paranormal Research Society.

“We’re paranormal researchers. We’re not out thrill-seeking. We’re not out prancing around some cemetery at night looking for thrills. We are interested legitimately in the research end of it," Strickland said.

She investigates historical sites, private homes and businesses in her free time, between her writing and teaching careers.

“Paranormal research is typically voluntary. We don’t charge for our services. I mean we’re not going to charge for something we can’t prove," she said.

Strickland started investigating about 20 years ago. And said she understands that not everyone believes in the paranormal, nor shares her passion for it. But said her paranormal work has helped her come to terms with the inevitable.

“I feel that my work as a paranormal researcher has helped me to understand more about the death process and more about losing a loved one. I feel like I’m more prepared say, when my mom or dad pass away. I think that by understanding the process, the dying process, it does provide a comfort, it does provide a sense of peace" she said.

This weekend, Strickland and her team will reveal the results of their investigation of the Escondido Library. It is part of a program called Boos and Booze, and it is sponsored by BattleMage Brewing Company. So, yes there will be beer. Whether you believe there will be spirits is up to you.


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