La Crosse, Wis. (WLAX/WEUX) A quick check of the calendar tells us that the spooky season is in full effect! Not only that, we are lucky enough to celebrate a Friday the 13th during this October. That got me wondering about hauntings in the city.
According to the website hauntedplaces.org, La Crosse has 4 recognized haunted buildings. Bodega Brew Pub, Dels Bar, The Warehouse Concert Venue and the Old Holmbo Residence.
The Bodega Brew Pub not only has a great beer selection and a pretty fine menu, but it’s also REALLY haunted. So much so, that it shows up as #8 on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s “10 Most Haunted Places in Wisconsin”. Legend has it that the original owner of the establishment took his own life in the basement of the building in 1901. Since then, noises, apparitions, chills, and mischievous happenings have been reported by employees and patrons alike.
Dels Bar is known to have disembodied voices inhabit its walls. From inane giggling when the bar is empty to maintenance men being told to leave the women’s room.
The Warehouse has an apparition that watches them do remodeling work. She has also been known to cause security systems to blink out. Though, according to the powers that be, she hasn’t been seen around there since they haven’t done much remodeling in many years.
Then, the Old Holmbo Residence where old man Nicolai Holmbo took his own life in 1904. Located on Logan Street, people have reported hearing strange noises coming from the empty building as well as flashing lights. Some have even seen Nicolai staring down the street from a top-floor window.
Venturing down the road we find even more creepiness in the Coulee region. The Pizza Villa building in West Salem has shaking doors and flickering lights and cabinets that open and close on their own. Before Disciascio’s in Coon Valley closed, employees reported seeing “Mary” float about the establishment. The Big River Inn in Genoa has deceased employee, Kenny, that turns appliances off and on.
And let’s not forget Winona.
Winona has the Pieces of the Past where you can hear people running up and down a stairwell that no longer exists. And Lourdes Hall, on the Winona State campus, where posters are removed from walls and doors lock on their own. And in St. Mary’s Heffron Hall, people have been known to see the ghost of the murderous Father Louis Lesches.
There are ghost stories from Ferryville, Wisconsin and Lanesboro, Minnesota and Decorah, Iowa and everywhere in between. In fact, I am betting that if you let your imagination run just a little bit wild, you could convince yourself that the place you are at right now is also haunted.
Did you hear that? That was a giggle, right?
Wait… did you see that? Out of the corner of your eye? That looked like a little girl did it?
Do you feel that? The sudden chill?
It’s probably nothing. Yeah… it was definitely nothing…