“The Haunting of Farrar” — Do you dare?
For people who are intrigued by things that go bump in the night, an event in Farrar on July 16 might be a perfect way to spend a night.
“The Haunting of Farrar” is an all-night event that will be held at the Farrar schoolhouse, presented by Paranormal Seekers of Iowa and Afterlife Sessions.
“I have been fascinated with the paranormal all my life,” said J.D. Campbell, co-founder and lead investigator for PSI.
Campbell and his team try to find answers to the unknown. They have investigated many places in Iowa, as well as Nebraska and Illinois — “anywhere from haunted schools, insane asylums, old hospitals and even a Cold War missile site,” he said.
Cheryl Ann Elliott-Fletcher is the psychic medium on the PSI team.
Among paranormal enthusiasts, the Farrar schoolhouse is known as a haunted location and has been visited by dozens of groups. It’s been featured on the Discovery Channel’s “My Ghost Story” and “Ghost Stalkers.”
Tickets are $35 per person and are available at hauntingatfarrar.com. The event includes a pizza dinner, 7-8 p.m.; presentation of evidence and equipment, 8-9 p.m.; gallery reading with Elliott-Fletcher, 9-10 p.m.; investigating the schoolhouse with PSI, 10 p.m.-1 a.m.; free roam of the schoolhouse, 1-4 a.m. (if you dare).
In 1919, C.G. Geddes agreed to donate six acres of his farm to merge the area’s one-room country schoolhouses. The school boards voted and created the Washington Township Consolidated School District.
The cornerstone inscribed with the year 1921 was set and the dedication ceremony commenced on April 1, 1922. The schoolhouse filled with citizens from miles around. An orchestra played on stage in the auditorium as a banquet served the hundreds in attendance.
Not all citizens were behind the new building, with its $100,000 price tag. One disgruntled citizen refused to attend the celebration, calling it a “monument to the arrogance and vanity of the school board,” with its boiler heating, electric lights and indoor bathroom facilities.
On May 3, 2002, once again, the band played, a banquet served the hundreds in attendance and sadly, the 80-year-old schoolhouse closed its doors for the last time.
The old school sat empty until December of 2006, when Jim and Nancy Oliver purchased the building. It became their home, with hopes of slowly restoring the school to its original appearance and layout.