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29 Oct 2011


Rockwood ghosts making TV debut

Director says he's no longer a skeptic

6:37 PM, Oct. 27, 2011 |
Written by

Once a skeptic, Rockwood Park & Museum director Philip Nord is now a believer.

He says he's heard footsteps in Rockwood Mansion when he was there alone.

Once, he says, he was even hit in the face by a "cold, wet localized energy" that almost knocked him over.

And a few months ago, as he was locking up the mansion for the day, Nord says he saw an apparition of a man sitting in a corner. Nord, who has been working at the mansion for 10 years, says he remembers the man looking right back at him.

Nord says he turned away and said, "I can see you." When he turned again, the man had vanished.

That's right: the museum's director believes his workplace is haunted -- and it's a belief that has turned into a nice little money maker for the museum, where tours are given for up to $40 per person.

And on Saturday night, the ghost stories about the 150-year-old estate will land Rockwood on national television.

Nord and the mansion's "resident ghost hunter" Lou DiMieri will appear on "My Ghost Story" at 10 p.m. on The Biography Channel, telling tales of paranormal happenings inside Rockwood's walls.

"It's a very scary story," says "My Ghost Story" executive producer Mark Phillips, who also heads the show's production company, Mark Phillips Philms & Telephision. "People have heard the sounds of children playing in there too."

Nord and DiMieri were flown to Los Angeles to shoot their segment for the show earlier this year, before welcoming a camera crew to the estate in Bellevue over the summer, where the duo have been giving ghost tours for eight years.

DiMieri got in contact with "My Ghost Story" producers after talking to a friend who manages the "haunted" Bissman Building in Mansfield, Ohio, where the show's staff was visiting for a segment.

Soon, he was on the phone with producers telling them about Rockwood, and work on the segment began, ending several years of attempts to get the mansion on one of the many ghost-related shows on cable television.

Considering Halloween is Monday, it shouldn't come as a surprise that the ghost tours scheduled for the mansion Saturday night are already sold out. The next tours will be held the night of Nov. 19 at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. They cost $20-$40.

Because of Saturday night's ghost tours, Nord and DiMieri will miss their own national television debut: "We're pretty excited, but we're going to have to watch it afterwards," Nord says. 

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