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The University of Alabama

‘Ghosts of the Black Belt’ Events Featured by UA Center

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The University of Alabama Center for Economic Development has helped organize Halloween haunted attractions in “The Ghosts of the Black Belt” events offered across the region this month.

The center has provided coordination and tourism training for communities in the Black Belt for October events in St. Stephens, Selma, Demopolis, Thomasville, Beatrice and Orrville.

Most of the events are family friendly, but participants are asked to visit for more details regarding the individual events and contact information.

The events and attractions include:

Old St. Stephen’s Historical Park Haunted House: Saturdays from Sept. 29 – Oct. 27 and on Tuesday, Oct. 30, and Wednesday, Oct. 31. Open from dusk – 11 p.m. each day at the St. Stephens Historical Park, 2056 Old St. Stephens Road, St. Stephens 36569. Attraction features a ghost trail through the old town, haunted house and spooky hay rides. Call 251/247-2622 for details.

Selma’s Tale Tellin’ Festival: Friday, Oct. 12– Saturday, Oct. 13, at the Carneal Arts Revive Building, 3 Church St.,  Selma 36702. The Swappin’ Ground opens at 5:30 p.m. and the stories begin at 7 p.m. From tall tales to historical happenings, from ghost stories to mountain legends, from folklore to modern fables, the 34th Annual Tale Tellin’ Festival will offer a rare mix of truth and dreams. Admission is $15 for adults or $25 for both nights and $10 or $15 for both nights for students 12 and under. Call 334/878-2787 for more information.

Ghost Stories at Rikard’s Mill Parks: Friday, Oct. 12– Saturday, Oct. 13, from 6:30–10 p.m. each night at Rikard’s Mill Historical Park, located five miles north of Beatrice on Hwy 265. Admission is $5. Activities include a pumpkin toss, pumpkin painting and a relay race, followed by spine-chilling ghost stories told around the bonfire. There will be a children’s area set up with games and prizes and food vendors will be on site. There will also be a haunted swamp trail that is not recommended for children. Call 251/575-7433 for more information.

Cahawba Spirits Investigation: Friday, Oct. 19. Tours begin every half hour from 7-9 p.m. at the Old Cahawba Archaeological Park, 9518 Cahaba Road, Orrville. This attraction is for ages 12 and up. Admission is $15. On this 90 minute moonlit tour, you will be shuttled to the town’s most haunted locations. Park staff will share historical accounts and personal experiences, setting the stage for a demonstration of “ghost hunting” equipment by Central Alabama Paranormal Investigations and a real ghost investigation. Reservations are required and available through the Selma Chamber of Commerce.  800/45-SELMA

“Hear the Dead Speak” daytime walking tour of Old Cahawba Park: Saturday, Oct. 20, 10 a.m. at Old Cahawba Archaeological Park, 9518 Cahaba Road, Orrville. Admission is $6. Be an “above-ground archaeologist” and discover messages that were left behind by the town’s long dead residents in the Cahawba’s relic landscape. This guided walking tour of Alabama’s most famous ghost town lasts about 45 minutes. This event is part of Selma’s Haunted History Weekend. Call 334/872-8058 for details.

Investigate Spirits at Kenan’s Mill: Saturday, Oct. 20, at 7, 9 and 11 p.m. at Kenan’s Mill, 188 County Road 236, Selma. Admission is $15 and this attraction is open to ages 12 and up. Hear the history of this 1860s mill, which is rumored to be haunted and search for evidence of those that have never left. The adventure begins with members of the Black Belt Paranormal Research Team explaining how ghost-hunting equipment works and how you can use it on your investigation at three different locations. The tour lasts approximately an hour and 45 minutes. Reservations are required and are available through the Selma-Dallas County Tourism Department. Call 800/45-SELMA for more information.

Thomasville Ghost Walk: Saturday, Oct. 20 at 6 p.m. in downtown Thomasville. Admission is $5 per person or $15 per family. The ghost walk includes a hayride, complete with stops based on some of the late Kathryn Tucker Windham’s much loved stories. Food and craft vendors will be on site. Call 334/830-7305 for details.

Tombigbee Haints and Haunts: Friday, Oct. 26, and Saturday, Oct. 27, at 7, 8 and 9 p.m. at the Demopolis City Landing, 130 Yacht Basin Drive,  Demopolis 36732. Admission is $15 and tickets are available at the Canebrake Craft Corner next to Bluff Hall in Demopolis. This event features an evening excursion through the darker side of Demopolis, complete with a spine-tingling presentation of stories about real people, true history and ghosts.  Call 334/289-9644 for more information.

The UA Center for Economic Development provides communities, counties and regions in Alabama with technical assistance and applied research to enhance local economic development efforts.

The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.

  • CONTACT: Kristi Payne or Linda Hill, UA Media Relations, 205/348-8325,
  • SOURCE: Martha Whitson, UA Center for Economic Development, 205/348-7058,