by Susan Mikula Campbell
Macy Boswell, Lewiston's gypsy queen of long ago, didn't join the Marble Orchard Ghost Walks last year.
Last Saturday, she was back in a special appearance to reintroduce the gypsy spirit at the Lewiston Cemetery next to First Presbyterian Church of Lewiston in the person of her grandson, Maxime Alexandrovich Belov.
Macy has been played for more than 10 years by Lewiston resident Sonja Jonsson, now 86, who confesses she abandoned her fortune-telling role, "because I don't see so good anymore." It can get dark in the cemetery during the ghost walks held every Saturday evening in September and October by the Lewiston Council on the Arts.
The younger generation is stepping in with Alex Gentile, 18, of Youngstown, who joined the Marble Orchard players last year as a War of 1812 ghost.
The Lewiston-Porter senior was excited to appear with Jonsson, the mother of arts council Artistic Director Eva Nicklas, for the first walk of the season. "It's real. You get the total take on generations," he said.
He describes Maxime as "cool" and plans to make him just as colorful as Macy has been.
Gentile, who has previously appeared in Lewiston-Porter High School and Theatre in the Mist productions, is looking forward to attending Niagara University with a double major in theater and teaching. "I would just love to have it all," he said.
Another young newcomer joining the adult characters in the cemetery is Spencer Finkbeiner of Lewiston, a high school freshman who puts aside his modern cant to give a chilling performance as Charlie McConnell, one of six children and the only one to survive past the age of 1.
The Marble Orchard Ghost Walks present both historical truths and ghostly legends. During the 90-minute walk, the Marble Orchard Players share ghost stories, myths and tales of tragedy, crime, mayhem and murder, the grim and ghastly deeds of Lewiston's best ... and worst, according to Nicklas. Starting at the Peace Garden at 476 Center St., theatrical guides walk participants through the Historic District, always (as in life) ending up in the Village Cemetery.
The Marble Orchard Ghost Walks begin promptly at 7 p.m. on Saturdays through Oct. 25, rain or shine. No reservations are necessary. Bring a flashlight. Cost is $15 for adults, $8 for children under age 12, and $12 for LCA members. Call 716-754-0166 for more information.