Paranormal Q&A with Marc Arvilla and Lauren Sheridan

FB_IMG_1426293951960Marc Arvilla and Lauren Sheridan are leaders of a team called Mass. Ghost Hunters Paranormal Society out of Gloucester Mass. They are holding an event in Salem this April referred to as SalemCon.  They also have a radio show on www.dtmwickedradio.com

 

Tell our readers about your team.

Marc – Mass Ghost Hunters Paranormal Society or MGHPS was started in early 2010 by me and a couple of friends. We had done a lot of research and reading before we decided to start investigating. At first we would only investigate public places until we were comfortable enough in our techniques that we could begin assisting people in their homes. Our group never charges for our services and we take great care in everything we do. MGHPS now has 3 to 4 active investigators and we are more than willing to work with other groups when necessary.

When did you become interested in the Paranormal and why?

Lauren – I became interested in the paranormal at a young age after having a personal experience during which I believe that a recently deceased relative was attempting to comfort me. It wasn’t until I had the chance to meet paranormal investigators and celebrities at Para History Con 1 that I discovered the depth of my interest in the paranormal.
Marc – Like Lauren, my interest also began at a young age. My most memorable experience was from my teenage years. I was home alone, with my dog, watching TV one night. It was winter so all of the windows were closed. As we sat watching TV my parent’s bedroom door slammed shut down the hall. I ran outside as fast as I could. I stood in my backyard until I could muster up the courage to go back inside. Once I did, I reluctantly went down the hall, checked on the room and found nothing. It wasn’t until shows like “Ghost Hunters” came on that I revisited my childhood curiosities and here I am today.

What is your favorite public place to investigate?

Lauren – Though the list of paranormal locations that I’ve investigated is quite small and not very diverse, I’d have to say that it’s a tie between Fort William Henry (Lake George, NY) and the now closed Irish Mist Bar & Restaurant (Troy, NY). These are 2 locations in which my paranormal experiences were the most intense, consistent, and fascinating.
Marc – Hands down my favorite location to investigate is Houghton Mansion in North Adams Mass. Every time that I have visited this building we have come away with evidence. I really feel drawn to Houghton and have a real need to investigate it several times a year. There is a connection that I cannot explain.

What do you find is the hardest thing in running a team and or investigating the Paranormal?

Marc – I believe that the hardest thing about running a team is maintaining a good reputation. So many people want to knock the next group down or shoot holes in what the other guy is doing. I don’t know why this has to be about being “the best”. This field started as a way to help people and find answers for the unexplained. Now it has become more of a battle of “my evidence is better than your evidence”. This goes along with what the most difficult part about investigating is; locations are becoming attractions, like Disney World. It’s more difficult to get into locations that we would like to “recreationally” investigate because it is either too expensive or claimed as someone else’s ”turf”.

Does your team hold any events, fundraisers and/or public investigations? If so tell us about them?

Marc – MGHPS has recently begun holding public events. Last year we conducted a small overnight investigation at the Lizzie Borden bed and Breakfast and everyone had a blast. The reviews were so good that we decided to have a second event, this one held at Venfort Hall in Lenox Ma. That too was a success so this time we decided to go big. On April 10th and 11th we will be hosting Salem Con 2015 at the Hawthorne Hotel in Salem, Ma. Salem Con is huge. We have several big name celebs that will be in attendance including John Zaffis, Brian Cano, Dustin Pari, Tim Weisberg, Jeff Belanger, John Tobin, and Scott Gruenwald. There will be a VIP party on Friday night, a vendor conference and lecture series on Saturday, and “Ghost Hunts’ on Saturday night. Tickets are still available on our website www.mghparanormal.com.

Experienced investigators state a newbie in the field should have a mentor? Did you have any mentors in the field and if so what is one thing you learned from them?

Lauren – I’ve been lucky enough to have more than 1 mentor in the field and I’m extremely grateful for each one individually. John Tobin introduced me to the paranormal field when he invited me join The Glory Haunt Hounds and it’s because of him that I’ve met so many wonderfully talented and genuinely friendly people, and also experienced the paranormal event/fundraiser aspect. Marc Arvilla took me under his wing almost immediately and has taught me the fundamentals of paranormal investigating. I wouldn’t want to investigate a location without him because I consider his knowledge and insight to be irreplaceable. Brian Cano has taught me how to investigate using critical thinking skills and common sense approached. His knowledge is invaluable as well.
Marc – I agree with this statement 100%. When getting involved in this field I read many books and took time to watch and learn from some pretty knowledgeable folks. If I had to choose one or two people that I could call a mentor I would say it is Joe Chin and his sister Christine Downes. Joe and Christine have taught me so much about technique, communication, and patience. Patience is so important.

Speaking of newbies what is the one piece of advice you could give someone starting out in the field and why?

Lauren –Maintain professionalism, Keep an open mind, Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and READ! Books are the most valuable sources of information available to us as investigators and researchers. We can only become better investigators by studying and learning from the experiences of the ‘Paranormal Pioneers’; an elite list that includes Ed and Lorraine Warren, Hans Holzer and Harry Price. The internet is OK for general information but not solid evidence or stone cold fact. If you want to be successful and respected in this field you’ve got to know your stuff.

Marc – One piece of advice that I would tell someone new to the field is DON’T EAT SPICY FOOD BEFORE AN INVESTIGATION. I’m kidding, but don’t. Seriously though, I would say find that mentor. Having someone with experience who can teach you the dos and don’ts is so important. This doesn’t mean that you can’t be an individual or have your own technique it means that you will learn how to apply your own style properly. Investigating is not what you see on TV. There is a lot of work that goes into each investigation whether you capture evidence or debunk everything. Knowing how to do it properly so no one gets hurt, and giving a client the best service possible is priority.

Who do you admire the most in the paranormal field?

Lauren –I think this is an unfair question because my list and reasons would be pages long however, I will say that I admire those who work hard, are modest, lead by example and through experience, and never stop learning because they think they know it all. People like John Zaffis, Jeff Mudgett, Marc Arvilla, Dominic Bouchard.
Marc – There are many people in this field that I admire. I don’t think that I can pick one person but I will say this: If you are willing to step into this field and push the envelope, maintain professionalism, and be yourself, I admire that.

What is favorite piece of paranormal equipment you could never leave home without and why?

Lauren –Because I’m incredibly clumsy I keep the equipment that I carry around to a minimum. I ‘d say, a digital recorder.
Marc – My favorite piece of equipment that I must have with me on every investigation is my digital recorder. Your body is the best tool you have and you need to listen to what it’s telling you. But, a digital recorder will sometimes take you into another world and someone else’s thoughts.

If you could investigate any place in the world where would it be and why?

Lauren –The Roman Forum, the Colosseum, or the Agora in Athens. The histories of these locations span thousands of years and include periods of brutality, political upheaval, and Stoic philosophy.
Marc – If I could investigate anywhere in the world It would have to be the Catacombs under Paris. I want to know who they are and what their stories are.

People say the paranormal field is dying off. Do you think that is true? Is there a future for the paranormal? What do you see and/or hope in the future for in this field?

Marc – I would not say that the paranormal field is dying off. The TV shows are running their cycle and are beginning to wane in popularity but the field is stronger than ever. There are more people investigating now than at any other point in history. There is a lack of direction at the moment but that will change. I hope that the future of this field finds teams cooperating and working toward a common goal. We do not need to all get along but we do need to work toward the same outcome.

If one of your friends described your team’s style of investigating what would they say?

Marc – I would hope that if someone were to describe our team they would say that we are professional, respectful, and honest.

You also have a talk radio show on DTM Wicked Radio. Tell us about it and how did you come up with the name? It is quite charming name and rolls off the tongue.

Marc – Lauren and I do have a show on DTM Wicked radio as well. We talked about many different names and what we could possibly call the show and ultimately the Paranormal Hangover name stuck with us. We felt that there were so many other shows out there that we wanted to be different and talk about the stuff other shows do not. We have all experienced the Paranormal Hangover from investigating into all hours of the night in dark and sometimes dangerous places. The effects can last for days, weeks, sometimes even months. That is what we what our show to do. We want our conversations to linger on in your mind.

What is the scariest public place you have ever investigated and why?

Lauren –The Irish Mist (Troy, NY). Every single person on our team was physically and mentally affected by the spirit activity and spirit energy during that investigation. Quite incredible.
Marc – I have to agree with Lauren again. The scariest place that I personally have ever investigated was the Irish Mist Pub in Troy, NY. The atmosphere became very charged at the end of the investigation and each person that was present was physically scratched. I also had a very emotional encounter with a child spirit on the 3rd floor of the warehouse portion of the building. I will never forget the Mist.

So many teams come and go from this field. Why do you think this happens?

Marc – I feel the biggest reason for the turnaround in our field is that people come in expecting it to be like the TV shows. They expect Portals, and poltergeists, and demons. It’s not usually like that and they do not want to put in the time and hard work. You sometimes can sit in a room for hours and hours and come away with nothing. Then they expect when they do capture something that a TV network will come knocking on their door with contract in hand. When this doesn’t happen the thrill has been had and it’s on to the next.

What does the future hold for M.G.H.P.S and Paranormal Hangover? Where do you see yourselves in five years?

Marc – I haven’t really given much thought to the future. I am happy to be where we are right now. If I were to hope for anything it’s that we are a respected team that people can come to with questions or for advice.

You can find their team at www.mghparanormal.com

or their show,  Paranormal Hangover at www.dtmwickedradio.com

The Legend of Thirteen Curves

IMG_0214-2Nestled between what was formerly called Pumpkin and Toad Hollows is a road that has supposedly a dark tragic history to it. This road is known as Cedarvale Road and is located about ten miles outside of Syracuse, NY.  It runs between what is now known as the towns of Onondaga and Marcellus. It is your typical rural country road that is very beauitful to take a scenic drive. The landscape consists of corn fields, woods and cow pastures. Several old farmhouses and modern homes are scattered throughout this area. There is a section on this road that consists of twisty and sharp hairpin turns known by locals as Thirteen Curves.

This section of Cedarvale Road starts at Howlett Hill Road and ends at Pleasant Valley Road. On one side of the thirteen curves are tree covered hills that form a wall extending the whole length of the curves. On the other side is Onondaga Creek with several deep ravines. This part of the road is extremely dangerous especially if you are going at a high rate of speed or are not paying attention to what is in front of you. The terrain is up and down hill. One can also easily get vertigo and disoriented traveling in this area Throughout history there has been several automobile, truck and farming vehicle accidents that occurred in this particular section. In winter the pavement can become very icy and snow covered. Someone not familiar with these treacherous curves can get into an accident here. This may have been the case of one particular deadly night sixty or seventy years ago involving a newly married young couple.

IMG_0212-2I grew up in a farming hamlet called South Onondaga in the southern part of Central New York situated in the town of Onondaga. South Onondaga in the 1800’s and early turn of century was known as Toad Hollow. It is a very hilly region and has several isolated rural roads that tend to twist and turn but nothing compares to Thirteen Curves. If you take Cedarvale Road from the Marcellus area you will eventually end up in of South Onondaga. As a child I heard several stories about Thirteen Curves and the ghostly tale. My mother also was born and raised in South Onondaga. She was born in 1942 and the story of Thirteen Curves has been around since she was a child. The legend of Thirteen Curves is very well known to locals. Recently it has gained international attention from being featured in several books and on T.V.

The version of the story which I heard throughout my childhood involved a newly wed couple traveling from Syracuse on their way to the village of Skaneateles to spend their honeymoon there. Skaneateles is a historical village that has several fine dining restaurants and inns even back in the early 1900’s. The couple was traveling in a new brand luxury car. They became lost and ended up on Cedarvale Road. It was late at night and they weren’t familiar with the dangerous curves on this road. The car veered off a curve and plummeted down into the creek. The accident supposedly happened on the seventh curve. The bride was killed instantly.

To this day, it is said that the ghost of bride haunts Thirteen Curves. Her spirit has been seen in the back seats of cars traveling the road, in the woods, floating above the creek or guiding across the seventh curve. She has been seen wearing a white wedding dress. Some report she is carrying an orange lantern. Sometimes she has been seen covered in blood. Others state she has been seen carrying her husband’s head. She also supposedly walks out in front of vehicles causing them to crash.

There are also several versions to this haunting tale and if you ask locals they may tell you a different story depending on who you ask. Variations to this story include many different scenarios on what happened to the car and the couple. One is that the couple’s car broke down and the husband went to get help at a farmhouse nearby. When he came back he found his wife dead and covered in blood. Not knowing how she died. Another version reports that the couple died instantly when they crashed into the creek. Yet another states that the husband died fixing a flat tire on their car while the wife waited in the car. Eventually the wife heard scraping noises on the rooftop of the car. She got out of the auto to take a look and saw a frightening scene. Her husband was dead, bleeding and hanging upside down from a tree. His fingers were touching the roof of the car causing the noise.

It is hard to keep track of all the stories regarding Thirteen Curves there are so many. Is it just a legend or true story? No one knows for sure. However no one can find records of a new married couple involved in a deadly car crash on Cedarvale Road that occurred sixty or seventy years ago.

IMG_0209-2According to the Webster Dictionary an urban legend can be defined as a story about an unusual event or occurrence that many believe is true but really isn’t true. These stories are usually told by word of mouth and have several variations to it. Usually there is no evidence or records to prove that this unusual event took place.

Locals and several others claim they have seen the ghost that haunts Thirteen Curves. The only commonalities to all the variations of this story is that a deadly car accident occurred involving a newlywed couple and there was death. If you look at other urban myths across the country you will find similar tales involving a couple in a deadly car accident. There are also stories about bride apparitions haunting different roads or streets and being seen in the back seats of vehicles.

This haunting tale fits the description of a classic urban legend. There are several different versions of the story. It had been told word of mouth. Generations have told the story in school yards, community events, in books and on T.V. There are similar stories across the country. There is no evidence or history records of this strange event. However what about those sightings of the ghostly bride by locals and people traveling the road?

Paranormal Q&A with D.T.M. Wicked Radio

D.T.M. Wicked RadioDenny and Tiffani Gager are the owners/managers of DTM Wicked Productions, LLC and DTM Wicked Radio. DTM Wicked Productions is a network created to bring the world of entertainment together. It was formed in May 2013. DTM’s goal is to give each listener an opportunity to interact with the talk show host and guests.

Denny Gager is an author of children’s books, co-owner/manager of DTM Wicked Productions and a paranormal investigator. His wife Tiffani Gager is a singer, co-owner/manager of DTM Wicked Productions, psychology student, talk show host of Wicked Edge on DTM and a paranormal investigator. They reside in the southern tier of New York State with several rescued fur babies. They are previous founders of their own paranormal team and big animal advocates.

How did you get started owning a network?

We had an internet radio show on a previous network. We loved doing radio and being able to talk to all the different people.  After a few differences of opinion we had with the previous network we decided “hey wouldn’t it be great to continue doing a radio show but on a network we own??” Thus the birth DTM WICKED PRODUCTIONS, LLC and DTM Wicked Radio Network.

What type of shows does your network carry and where can people find your network?

We have a very diverse network with a variety of shows to feed everyone’s entertainment hunger. We have the Wicked Edge which has on authors, musicians, other podcasters, comedians, actors A list celebs and a plethora of many other guests.  We also have music shows for example one by the bassist of a System of A Down – Sgavo Odadjian called iHeartShavo. He has A list musicians, independent musicians and A list actors on his show. He is very funny open and down to earth show. We have shows on a variety of subjects such as weather, animal rescue, LGBT Diversity, women issues, sex and other controversial topics.  We are constantly adding all different types of shows.  For example, we are adding a metal music show hosted by women.   We can be heard on www.dtmwickedradio.com, IHeartradio.com Twitter, Podbean, Videobash, Freedom Talk Radio and I few other I can’t remember…..sorry!

What do you find the hardest thing about running a network?

The hardest thing about running a network is making sure everything runs smoothly such as making sure all your sponsors are happy. Making sure your hosts are following network contracts and are happy as well trying to maintain a personal and family life outside the paranormal field and network. Holding on to your sanity or what sanity you have left. It’s a balancing act that not many would understand.

As a couple do you find it hard to run a business together?

Mmmmm, sometimes. We can butt heads sometimes and disagree. I (Tiffani) can be headstrong and stubborn when I believe something isn’t right or should be confronted and handled a certain way. Denny is a little more laid back. But at the same time it’s nice to have a relationship where you can work together because then you understand each other’s ups/ downs and frustrations. It is also nice because we support and encourage each other.

Who is the most interesting person you ever interviewed on your show?

Oh boy that’s a touchy one. We have interviewed so many wonderful interesting and fun people it’s hard to choose. I loved interviewing William Shatner, Doris Roberts, Bruce Boxlietner Tim Reid and they were all very interesting and insightful. I have also interviewed authors who I will never forget. One of my favorite gusts to interview though was Mike Sciabarrasi of Deftone Pictures. He is such a kind, warm and funny guy. We just love mike every time he is on Wicked Edge.

Why should people tune into the DTM Network?

BECAUSE WE’RE AWESOME!! HELLO!! Lol People should listen to  DTM because we have fun amazing shows with interesting hosts that talk about a  wide range of subjects….you are never bored listening to ANY show on DTM Wicked Radio Network.

You are paranormal investigators. What does a paranormal investigator mean to you?

It means helping someone who feels they have unexplained activity.  Who needs a “sort” of confirmation and/or helping what/who is responsible for the activity to move on and giving the clients comfort.

Why did you become paranormal investigators?

To seek answers to questions of the supernatural and to help others.

Tell us your approach to investigating?

Calm, skepticism and compassionate.

You have been in the field for a while and you have seen people come and go in the paranormal field …why do you think this happens?

Everyone has their own reasons so it varies….but what I have observed is a lot of people leave the para field because sometimes they feel targeted by those who feel they are “paranormal martyrs”.  These people feel they have the right to “expose” people for God knows what reason when in reality they are just bullying them. I mean who wants to put up with that? Others leave I believe because they probably didn’t think “Ghost hunting” or Investigating required alot of time, effort and work.  Others simply didn’t get the attention or fame they thought they would have after seeing all the para shows.

Tiffani, you are working on a degree in psychology do you think knowledge in psychology or human services can help you in your business and the Paranormal field? If so please elaborate?

That’s a very big YES.  With both the investigating and the network it helps me read people and understand people.  It also helps me analyze people (investigators and clients) so I can make the best judgment calls on how safe it would be to have someone on our team investigate a client’s home.

Denny, you have written a series of children’s books. Why children’s books and what made you want to become an author?

English was my favorite subject. I have always liked kids. I wanted to write children’s books to view everything through the eyes of a child again,. Leave the troubles of the world behind while I write the stories.

What is the toughest thing about being a paranormal investigator?

Putting up with criticism from those who do not understand what we do and why. Having to explain to “potential” team members why we don’t have a camera crew following us and why we don’t have a show. Also, why we don’t always pick up activity on every investigation.  Determining who really needs our help and the ones who just want to be on TV.

There are lot of paranormal bullies out there. Why do you think this occurs. Why do you think paranormal people feel the need to attack others in the field?

There is absolutely no one reason why anyone should attack anyone. I understand people can disagree and people can have a different way of doing things. However there is a time and place for everything which you can always be professional.  You can also handle any issue you have with anyone with integrity and respect. Those who bully are egotistical and narcissistic. They feel they have impress upon the world their superiority by “intimidation”.

What would you tell a newbie who wants to get into the paranormal field?

The para community is smaller than you think. It’s more involved and complicated than it looks. The people within the para field (clients included) are more intense regarding inner family dynamic and relationships.  The actual investigation is complicated. You are working with people who may have a variety of issues and problems going on in their life.  Not everything is haunted or demonic. If you are looking for fame and fortune than you are in the wrong field for many reasons.

Where would you like to see your network and team within the next five years?

As for DTM Paranormal Investigations we have dissolved our team. Other than investigating with trusted teams when asked to or a public investigation we just don’t have the time to dedicate to it  We are  so busy with the network. As far as DTM WICKED PRODUCTIONS, LLC and DTM Wicked Radio Network…..the sky is the limit and we are reaching for the stars and beyond. We hope one day for the DTM name to be on everyone’s tongues and a fixture in everyone’s ears!

One last question.. tell us one thing about yourselves that people don’t know about you?

Denny is a nerd at heart. GO MARVEL!

Tiffani-Beth  I got so nervous before interviewing Bruce Boxleitner I almost hyperventilated.

You can find DTM Wicked Radio at www.dtmickedradio.com or on Facebook.