WICD Channel 15 News Visits the 3rd Annual Central Illinois Paracon

Jim Heater and I, photo by David Bales
Jim Heater and I, photo by David Bales

WICD Channel 15 News in Champaign covered the 3rd Annual Central Illinois Paracon this weekend and generously included several quotes from myself, as well as the event organizer Becky Guymon and others. You can watch the video at this link or read an excerpt of the story here:

MATTOON– Psychics, tarot card, crystal, and aura readers, and even ghost hunters. All were on hand in Mattoon Saturday to speak with the public about paranormal activity. Organizers say it’s all part of an effort to better educate a thrill-seeking community.

Dozens of exhibitors and guest speakers were in Mattoon Saturday for the Central Illinois Paracon and Psychic Fair. Paranormal investigation teams from across the area were on hand to demonstrate ghost hunting equipment and techniques…

Several guest speakers have been featured on ghost hunting TV shows, but one speaker says the local interest is often traced to local history. Michael Kleen says, “People like to see something interesting about their hometown, they want to know there’s something going on that’s a little bit out of the ordinary that sort of makes living in the town that they live an exciting experience.”

That popularity has not been lost on the Illinois Metaphysical and Paranormal Society, which hosts the convention. Co-founder Becky Guymon says, “The community’s been great, we’ve had a lot of community support. A lot of people come out, I think everyone’s really interested in it. This is our third year doing this and it gets bigger every year.”

And though not every hunt turns up a ghost, sometimes the learning process is just as important. Kleen says, “The legend is important, you know? I don’t think just because a legend is untrue doesn’t mean it’s not meaningful. So I think it does detract a little bit in a sense. But the ghost stories are always going to be there no matter what.” [More…]

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