With Halloween just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to explore the supernatural with your friends. Luckily, you don’t have to travel thousands of miles to get the spooky experience you’re looking for. There are many places in Ohio with haunted attractions, from hotels to reformatories, that are the perfect place to explore interesting history or just to get a good scare.
The Ohio State Reformatory (also known as the Mansfield Reformatory) is perhaps the most famous haunted attraction in northeast Ohio. It has been featured in a number of films, most notably The Shawshank Redemption. Completed in 1919, The Ohio State Reformatory held over 600 individual cells stacked six stories high. Though it originally began as a well-meaning facility designed to reform nonviolent criminals, things soon turned sour. The reformatory experienced overcrowding and began to serve more as a punishment for criminals than a rehabilitation. There were many counts of guards torturing prisoners, and when prisoners got sick they were often left to die in the infirmary. There are many rumors that some of these prisoners still haunt the reformatory to this day. Though the prison was shut down and is no longer in use as an actual reformatory, it is open to the public and offers haunted tours, paranormal programs, and even a seasonal haunted house.
If you’re more in the mood for a haunted dinner out, the Sisters Century House Restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner as well as a spooky show. The building was once a crematorium, and guests have reported seeing shadows, ghosts and even a particular room that makes many people feel dizzy. On Halloween evening, Sisters Century House hosts a seance with a psychic medium.
If you’re looking for a supernatural overnight experience, the Lafayette Hotel in Marietta, Ohio might be the place for you. Built upon the ruins of a hotel that burned down in 1916, the Lafayette is said to be haunted by the ghost of a deceased manager. Guests have reported lights flickering, bulbs breaking and even the elevator mysteriously traveling to the roof seemingly of its own accord.