Did a WRVO reporter see a ghost at Sylvan Beach? You decide.
It’s a question that has spanned centuries: Is there a connection between here and the beyond? WRVO reporter Jessica Cain teamed up with some local ghost hunters to find out.
Cain’s daughter, Kyla, encouraged her to go on a ghost tour and hunt after developing an interest in ghosts at school.
"I was reading on my Ipad at school and I saw a ghost book, so I started reading it,” said Kyla. “And there were basically only three books, so I just read them over and over and over and over again."
The pair headed to Sylvan Beach Amusement Park to join “Casper Cops” for a paranormal investigation.
James Pendell, the group’s ghostly guide, said the company was called “Casper Cops” because they only look for friendly ghosts. He’s a retired private investigator, so he’s always on the search for hard evidence of the supernatural.
“I use recorders, cameras. I like to physically document things,” said Pendell.
He was drawn to Sylvan Beach for its rich history, including the Erie Canal, the railroad, and of course, the vintage carnival.
During the ghost tour, Pendell told the crowd about coming in contact with some of the park’s haunts, like Jack, a carnival worker who ran a Kentucky Derby game before his demise.
“(Jack) was wearing a long dark coat, and we made eye contact,” said Pendell. “And as soon as we made eye contact, it wasn't like 'poof! He was gone.' There was just nothing there anymore."
Pendell took his ghost-hunting group to the “Tip Top” ride and showed them a picture of another tour group with what appeared to be a ghostly little girl in one of the seats.
Julianna Scymanoski said she was the person on that ride with the ghost.
"The reason why I'm here is that photo that the guy showed you was me and my cousin Haley on the ride, and the girl was right next to us, so that's why I believe this whole place," said Scymanoski.
Her other cousin, Braxton Holder, 11, was on his first tour hoping for a similar supernatural experience.
"I like to watch like a lot of real-life sometimes documentaries or horror movies about this stuff, say like ‘The Conjuring’ or ‘The Exorcist,’" Holder said.
Minutes later his wish came true.
As the ghost hunters piled into an arcade and asked the ghosts to move coins, Holder noticed he caught something on his camera phone.
On the screen, a seemingly ghostly figure stood along the opposite wall from where the group had been standing.
Kyla said she also had a supernatural experience. Pendell took the group to Kahuna’s Burgers and Floats, where he asked the spirits to move salt shakers and respond to knocks.
Kyla said when Pendell knocked, she was the only one who heard a response. And that didn’t surprise her.
"Kids have an extra sense of seeing ghosts because they believe in ghosts more than grownups,” she said.
To learn more about Casper Cops and their ghostly interactions and investigations, click here.