Sure, you can check out our listings for commercial haunted houses when you flip the page, but going to the real-life haunts is a hell of a lot more scary, right?
Brittany Hill Mansion, Thornton
The story goes, the wife of the famed Brittany Hill Mansion owner walked in on her hubby with another woman many, many years ago. The wife was so distraught that she threw herself out of the century-old mansion’s third-story tower, dying instantly. The husband, in turn, hung himself out of guilt. If you walk up to the main entrance at night, you can see the ghost of him holding his wife in the window of the tower, although both ghouls may be homeless soon. The Thornton mansion/restaurant has been shuttered for a year, and it is rumored a developer will buy the lot and raze the historic home in favor of lucrative condos taking advantage of the city and mountain views from the top of the creepy hill. But the creaky old home still sends shivers through a few unlucky security guards who protect the grounds from vandalism.
Vampire Grave, Lafayette
There’s one headstone in the Lafayette graveyard that has a distinctly different and eerie feel than the rest. It belongs to Todor Glava, and most of the wording on it is in gibberish, or perhaps in vampire-ish language. Glava was struck dead by a wooden stake through the heart in 1918. A supposed vampire, his modest gravesite is located in the northwest corner of the Main Street graveyard, marked by a simple concrete slab. A tree that grows there is supposedly directly from the stake driven through his heart. Adorning the top of the grave is a less than healthy rose bush that survives despite never blooming. It is rumored to be the nails of the vampire reaching out for those who tread upon his resting place. Oh, and as if to confirm the vampire lore, Glava’s gravestone says he was born in Transylvania.
Pasquini’s became part of local spook legend the same way old west disputes were settled—by shootout. There was once a gambling hall in the basement featuring old tunnels used for bootlegging. Around the turn of the century, a man was shot during a poker dispute; so was a girl who tried to stop the violence. The tunnels are now blocked, but pizzeria employees say the innocent girl’s presence is felt when temperatures inexplicably dip and light bulbs disappear.
Vance Brand Civic Auditorium, Longmont
Midterms are far from the only thing scaring students at Skyline High School—its Vance Brand Civic Auditorium has a ghostly history. When the performance hall was being built, Edison, a janitor, was supposedly killed when a balcony collapsed. Weird things happen to the electrical system, lights go out, strange noises bellow, and students have reported cold spots, and sometimes a strange, dark figure in the back of the balcony. That’s just a taste of the horror stories, so we recommend just steering clear of the auditorium.
Fairview High School, Boulder
Ever since a senior committed suicide via hanging in the dressing room of the theater in 1982, bizarre activities have been noted near the Boulder school’s stage. Singing can be heard from offstage, lights flicker and sets fall down despite being nailed to the floor.
Riverdale Road, Thornton
Stretching from Denver to Brighton this curvy country road is guarded by car-chasing phantom dogs. The road used to be the Cherokee Trail used by Native Americans before becoming a path that poorly-treated sugar beet migrant workers used. By the way, the ghostly pups simply vanish after a short chase.
Pillar of Fire, Westminster
Once known as Westminster University, the castle-esque building was constructed in 1890 with the hope of becoming the “Princeton of the West.” Instead, its fame has been founded through tales of a mass murder. Now, faces of the victims appear in the windows that face the cemetery at night. During the first World War, the university closed and The Pillar of Fire church moved in—it is now home to Belleview schools.
Sigma Chi Fraternity House, CSU
This frat house is haunted by the ghost of a former sorority president that once inhabited the building—Gerty was found hanging in the spiral staircase of the building and has been seen in bathroom mirrors late at night. The scent of lilacs also fills the building randomly.
College Inn, Boulder
When the hotel bordering the CU campus first opened 30 years ago, it was rumored to be a hotbed of poltergeist activities. On the third floor, look for stains appearing and disappearing on the walls, doors opening and closing on their own, and smoke-like apparitions.
Angevine Middle School, Lafayette
Roam the halls at night and you’re libel to run into a red-eyed, blond-haired boy stuck writing on paper in detention—it’s the ghost of a student murdered by his teacher.
Johnson Hall, CSU
Former home to the college’s theater department, folklore has been passed through the years that an actor, unhappy with casting, hung himself in the theater. He now roams the halls, and just to freak students out more, the locations of the building’s staircases—built as an afterthought by a confused architect—make little sense.
Westminster City Hall
Pass by Westminster City Hall at midnight, and look to the tower. The spirits of a woman and children who were murdered and buried beneath it show up in the windows at night.
Niwot High School
For some reason, it seems there are many schools in the North that have some sort of horrific murder story. Niwot High is no exception—it’s haunted by a child that was murdered by a janitor in the basement.