Paranormal Muskegon is back! And what better way to begin than with a ghost-hunting lesson? There are quite a few places around that we could have went ghost-hunting in; but there is no better place to look for ghosts than Nunica Cemetery; one the most haunted places in Michigan. It has long been rumored to be haunted by a variety of spirits and there are countless stories of ghosts from both visitors to the area as well as investigators.
On hand to teach us some ghost-hunting basics was Darren Dykhouse of Lakeshore Paranormal. We’ve had Darren on the show a few times to tell us about his ghost-hunting experiences and with many ghost-hunting investigations under his belt, it was a good fit. We went out on the first day of Autumn. It was a beautiful crisp day, a few leaves just starting to turn, sunshine, and just a hint of breeze. Not Halloween-type weather by any means; but still a nice day to be outside; even if you’re not ghost-hunting. As ghost-hunting goes; the daytime hours are not considered optimal; but Darren said he has picked up spirit activity here both during the day as well as at night. Darren shared with us what made him decide to hunt ghosts as a living. He said he’s had an interest in the paranormal for most of his life and has had a few experiences of his own well before starting Lakeshore Paranormal. He has hunted ghosts in a number of places around Muskegon as well as other cities. Nunica cemetery is one of the go-to places for ghost-hunting as it is said to be one of the most haunted cemeteries in Michigan and Darren has investigated it on numerous occasions. He has also investigated quite a number of buildings and houses in Muskegon as well as throughout the state. His Youtube channel is becoming quite popular and Lakeshore Paranormal is bringing attention to some of the rumored hauntings in the area. Darren uses his empathic as well as a variety of electronic or digital devices and cellphone applications in his work. Today he brought a K-2 device and a “Spirit box.” The SB7-T, or spirit box, is a device that phases out white noise. The K-2 meters pick up on electromagnetic fields as spirits are said to be able to alter these signals and make “spikes” on the meter. Darren gave me a crash course on using the K-2 and I got to try my luck at picking up some ghostly activity with it.
First we did a walk-through. Darren says he likes to get a feel of where the most energy is before he begins using his equipment. It seemed to be quite peaceful as we walked around. A tree-lined, gravel road winds through this “city” and two large trees near the entrance are said to be an area where a lot of spirit activity has been felt. The trees are scarred with countless names and graffiti carved into them. A man is rumored to have hung himself on one of the trees. We stood quietly near them and Darren attempted to see if anyone would communicate with us by having the lights on the K-2 meter light up, or “spikes.” We didn’t get any then but Darren did get one short spike later on as we walked around. Darren said the spirits seemed to be quiet today but that a few of the spirits who have made themselves known on occasion are Joel Bond, said to wear a farmer’s hat; a little girl who is very playful and the apparition of a lady in white; which Darren has actually seen. After we walked around using the K-2 meter; Darren then turned on his spirit box; which picked up some interesting voices coming through the white noise. These would need to be further analyzed to get a better idea of what the spirits were trying to communicate, but Darren feels there was definitely some positive EVP activity. At one point a snippet of conversation was heard, saying, “I love your audition,” which given that we were shooting a video for a media company and it was the first ghost hunt that Paranormal Muskegon has done; this seemed to make sense.
The village of Nunica, Michigan began in 1872, although Native Americans inhabited the area for centuries. The cemetery was established in 1883 not too long after the town and placed very near or on top of a Native American burial ground. Darren calls Nunica Cemetery “The City of Lost Souls” because he feels the cemetery was sort of a “melting pot” of spiritual energies; much like a city of the living. He also says he had picked up spirit voices referring to it as a “city” and feels they were trying to let him know there were a lot of “lost souls” there. Darren says that many of these “lost souls” died from illness; and in fact an influenza epidemic did kill hundreds of Nunica’s residents, many of them children. The town was also devastated when a fire destroyed most of it, including the train station; a tragedy that the town was never able to fully recover from.
Darren advises anyone who is interested in doing some ghost-hunting of their own or wants to learn more about the paranormal in general, local libraries are a good place to start. He said when first starting out, he read everything he could on the subject. He also advices novices that like anything else it takes practice, time, and patience before you start getting results.
So all in all; this was a pretty good day for this ghost-hunting novice. While I spend a lot of time researching and talking to people about their experiences and investigations, it was fascinating to go out and experience it first-hand. While we didn’t find any ghosts on this hunt; with the spike activity and intriguing responses on the spirit box, it’s enough to give it another go in the future.
Darren’s videos can be found on his Lakeshore Paranormal - YouTube channel; or find him on Lakeshore Paranormal | Facebook.
If you want to read more about the haunted history of Nunica Cemetery as well as about a few of Darren’s investigations into some of Muskegon’s haunted sites; be sure to check out my book: Haunted Muskegon by Marie Helena Cisneros | The History Press Books