Friday, October 6th, was the arrival of a full Harvest Moon. It was also the arrival of my scheduled tour of 95.9 FM The Ranch, a haunted country music radio station in Ft. Worth’s Sundance Square.
Trouble had already began to stalk me as my first videographer cancelled. Luckily, I was able to locate another brave soul willing to take a stroll with me into Hell’s Half Acre.
The next obstacle was what to wear. I didn’t want to show up at such a cool radio station looking like Lois Lane and my videographer stated that she didn’t want to resemble Underdog’s girlfriend, Sweet Polly. So, we decided casual Friday would do.
Armed with an EMF detector, I found myself glancing around for a rabbits foot or shaker of salt to ward off any bad luck. Who knows, I may even need a stiff margarita after this one, I reasoned.
We pulled into the parking lot and moments later were greeted by the fine staff at The Ranch. While waiting for Gabriel, our tour guide, I did notice someone looking a little like Wolf Man Jack. The tour began and we were taken downstairs to a lounge area and briefed on the hotspots of the building. We were also told how when any changes are made to the structure of the building, such as remodeling, it sems to upset things around there.
While working downstairs, one crew began having trouble with their lighting, even their flashlights weren’t functioning properly. When light bulbs began bursting, they ran upstairs and asked the morning crew if something was wrong with the building. The reply was, “Yes, it’s haunted. Good luck.”
Doors lock themselves here. Evening DJ, Chuck Taylor, was once trapped in the studio, having to call for help, in a room where there is no lock on the door. He isn’t the first occupant to be locked in a room here.
Gabriel told us that they had heard the building was haunted and when they first moved in, a call was made to 911. It was a call none of them had made.
Previous businesses housed here include a train depot, hotel, chocolatier and among others, a possible bordello.
The two most active and restless spirits are reportedly that of an unidentified woman, whom legend has it, hung herself on the third floor. Also seen here is a pale faced cowboy standing near the bottom of the old stairwell.
The windows on the upper floor are boarded up and things there have a history of breaking. Previous occupants once rushed upstairs after hearing glass break, to witness their wine glasses crashing one by one from off the shelf.
During our tour, several of the hotspots Gabriel had mentioned were areas registering a reading on the EMF detector. In one of these areas we heard a loud thud. I said, “Did ya’ll hear that?” They did. I asked Gabriel, our not so ghoulish guide, what it was. He said, “It could be from the street, but that was a wierd noise.” As my photographer and I turned to follow him, the noise continued, only now it was more like a dragging sound.
We were told that PBS was there a few weeks ago. One man had switched off his light only to have it immediately switch itself back on.
One of our last stops on the tour was the balcony where patio tables sit outside on a roof top overlooking the street below. Here, we were told, is where the good times roll. This radio station really has it going on, in a lot of ways.
I assumed my adventure had ended until wide eyed and drinking coffee the next morning, I carefully reviewed the film from the video camera. Captured on film in one of the hotspots, is a long, wavy, white streak passing across, moving much slower than the speed of light.
The Ranch will be holding their 4th anniversary Ranch Bash come rain or shine Saturday, October 21st at 1pm in Sundance Square.
They will also begin remodeling their basement in a few weeks.
Here’s to one radio station with guts. Salt, please.