BEND, OR -- One of the Deschutes Historical Museum’s most popular fundraisers is back for another spooky season. The Historical Haunt walking tour program is now in its 14th year. Museum Manager Vanessa Ivey says this isn’t a haunted house, "It is 90% history, it’s 10% paranormal and it’s 100% fun."
Over the course of a one-hour stroll through downtown, tour guides stop outside businesses and talk about the history of the buildings, "And then, also sharing some of the few paranormal stories that we’ve heard," Ivey tells KBND News, "These are stories that multiple people shared with us, so it’s not like a one-time occurrence kind of thing." She adds, "We hit about six or seven locations, and it is a lot of fun. About every three or four years, we kind of shake it up a bit. We have found that the tours that we’ve been doing this year and the last couple years are some of the museum’s favorite stops. They have some wonderful stories and we’re just excited. Each year it gets better and better."
Ivey says it’s one of the museum’s biggest fundraisers, "The majority of everybody who go on this event have an extraordinary experience because they’re learning something new about their community, they’re having fun. And that’s that whole point: history is fun. History is not boring."
Each walking tour starts at the historic Reid School building, now home to the Deschutes Historical Museum. Tickets include museum admission. The tour ends downtown, covering approximately one mile of flat sidewalks and through alleyways. Tours leave every 20 minutes. As the featured locations are operating businesses tours do not enter any buildings.
Tickets are available online and Ivey says tours frequently sell out. "It is still as popular as ever. And I am amazed at how many people participate." They are offered over just two days, beginning Friday the 13th.