Sue Corkum remembers hearing, seeing and sensing weird things and sensations in the historic Klondike building on Main Street in downtown Menomonee Falls where she owned her art gallery.
Once, she was in the basement, and she saw a green light come out of nowhere and go up toward the ceiling.
Another time, she was in the back of her studio when she saw two women. She then realized she could make out only their heads; there were no bodies attached.
Once when her husband, Tim, operated the coffee shop in the gallery, he saw one of the coffee sleeves move on its own.
In 2012, she had Cream City Paranormal — a group that hunts and researches ghosts — come in to investigate. They sat in the basement of Purloin Studio with the lights off, blocked out the front windows and had cameras record. They did hear some activity, but was it a ghost?
“I don’t know if this (paranormal activity) was real or not,” she said.
Corkum owned Purloin Studio in the Klondike building from 2011-20, until she retired. She said it was common for people to ask — especially around Halloween — whether there were ghosts there.
The Haunted Hotel and Pub Crawl, from 8 p.m. to midnight Oct 30, might be an opportunity for people to find out.
Haunted Hotel event
Art Lounge, an eatery, art gallery and studio that now occupies the Klondike building, will go back in time for the event, turning the building into a hotel and tavern like it was in the early 1900s.
Art Lounge owner Stacie Estrada said although she has not seen or heard of ghosts or paranormal activity in the building, she is excited to provide a “haunted hotel experience” for people 21 and older for the Oct. 30 event.
“We are heading back to the early 1900s and turning the Klondike building back into the Central hotel and tavern, but haunted,” said Estrada. ” We will have some interactive components and make it a ghostly evening.”
In addition to Art Lounge, many other downtown bars and restaurants plan to offer deals and promotions that day. There is no admission fee.
People are encouraged to come in costumes.
Participants are encouraged to meet at Art Lounge, N88 W16567 Main St. Haunted tours are planned to last until midnight.
Other participating restaurants include: Player’s Pub, Krueger’s, Hot House Tavern, Sal’s Pub and Grill, The Alumni Club Tavern and Eatery, American Legion Post 382, Water Street Pub and Grill and A.J.O’ Brady’s Irish Pub & Grill.
According to the Wisconsin Historical Society online records, Nic Goeller built the Central Hotel — later known as the Klondike — in 1897.
The Central had a hotel on the upper floors, a saloon on the first floor and a bowling alley in the basement. Goeller ran the business until about 1915. After passing through many owners, Max Brazy purchased the building in 1923; he owned it until 1951.
The hotel rooms and lobby on the second floor were remodeled for apartment use. The bowling alley was used as a shooting gallery when the building housed a sporting goods store.
It housed many businesses through the years, most recently as an art gallery.
“I loved the building,” said Corkum. “This is the character of old buildings. I never felt frightened (of possible ghosts). It (being in a historic building) was fun.”