30 Dec 2013
'Slightly haunted' open house draws crowd in Dunmore
Published: December 30, 2013
DUNMORE - The Beatles songs and fresh-baked cookies lifted spirits during a "slightly haunted home" open house at 1217 Marion St., Dunmore, but not many visitors were buying the spooky tales.
The home received international attention after a Zillow.com real estate listing described occasional footsteps, faint screams and shadowy images in the Victorian home.
As with any open house, visitors were concerned about issues such as closet space, the electrical system and the neighborhood.
Ann Bloom of Scranton dismissed the paranormal claims. She is in the market for a four-bedroom home. However, an antique rocking horse covered in a white sheet in the attic seemed unintentionally - or perhaps intentionally - creepy.
"At least it didn't start rocking on its own," she joked. Her daughters Abigail and Cecilia were not as ready to write off the possibility of a haunting, and after a while in the house, seemed ready to leave.
As Gene Terenzio Sr. of Lake Ariel reviewed the partial refinishing of the third floor, he called the alleged haunting "a bunch of crap." While he believes in evil spirits influencing people to do bad things, he doesn't think those spirits "make themselves known."
Owner Greg Leeson grumbles as much about inquiries seeking to formally confirm the haunting as those trying to challenge it. He portrays himself as a skeptic.
"People want to come through with a recorder and think they are going to catch a ghost," he said, noting he ignores or denies inquires from "ghost hunters." He brushes off accusations that he's a desperate seller trying to draw attention to the home. He added the notes about the house as an afterthought, he said. Recently, he was interviewed by an Australian news outlet.
"I don't care what people may say, and they are entitled to their opinion," he said. "I suppose there are several explanations for what happened here."
For a skeptic, Mr. Leeson knows the paranormal lingo. When a visitor mentioned electronic voice phenomena, or EVP, sounds emerging from background noise or static that resemble speech, Mr. Leeson said he heard them in the house. Their baby monitor occasionally carried sounds that seemed like someone trying to speak to their daughter.
They have a newborn son and a baby monitor back in use, but haven't noticed any EVP, he said.
The Leesons are mostly moved out of the house. They plan on relocating to Maryland to be closer to family. The goings-on at the house may make them uneasy, but they don't feel threatened, Mr. Leeson said. With two children, they realize the value of being close to family.
About 30 individuals, groups or couples toured the house, Mr. Leeson said, including a past owner, who shared some supernatural stories from his time in the home. Mr. Leeson thinks there were a handful of serious shoppers among them.
Will the unwanted guests remain in the Dunmore home, or perhaps relocate with the Leesons?
Mr. Leeson isn't concerned. He called the idea of ghosts following people around "ridiculous" and a product of "dumb movies."
Contact the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org