Region offers plenty of thrills
By AAA of Western and Central New York
Road trips reign supreme when it comes to 2020 travel, and the fall season is no exception. Travelers looking for some adventure may want to consider adding a bit of the paranormal to their fall getaway since it is the spookiest season of the year. In fact, New York state has a haunted past that travelers can easily find if they visit the right locations.
A historic lighthouse, a haunted restaurant where a ghost might just join you at the table, a museum with an eerie history, and a downright scary asylum all make the list of AAA Western and Central New York’s top picks for a haunted experience this fall as we approach Halloween.
•Buffalo Region: Dunkirk Historical Lighthouse & Veterans Park Museum
Haunted tours are already booked for 2020, but you’re welcome to go ghost hunting on your own and learn about the lighthouse’s history: The first shot of the War of 1812 was fired near the lighthouse; the first soldier killed in the Civil War was from Dunkirk; and several shipwrecks occurred in the waters of Lake Erie where the lighthouse sits. Does that spell haunted to you?
•Rochester Region: Union Tavern – Irondequoit
Formerly the Reunion Inn, the property was sold in 2019, and as far as we know, ghosts don’t move when the for sale sign goes up. The Union Tavern is located in the Sea Breeze neighborhood and the history dates back to the early 1800s – creating plenty of time for ghost gatherings. The new owners are known for their outstanding food items, so we recommend a visit, and keep an eye out for potential hauntings.
•Syracuse Region: Erie Canal Museum – Syracuse
The Haunted History Trail of New York State says, “Home to several ghosts, including a group of see-through children who play in the courtyard, a woman who was killed where the model canal boat now sits and a pair of arguing men, you'll hear tromping through the 150-year-old hallways.”
That’s enough to send a shiver up our spines!
•Worth the drive from any area: Rolling Hills Asylum – East Bethany
Just pulling up and looking at the former asylum can send chills up your spine. The former government-run home is now the site of paranormal activities that have attracted TV crews and more. Ghost hunts and tours are limited due to the pandemic, but several haunted opportunities await at this downright creepy location.
Find additional places to visit along the Haunted History Trail of New York State – a collection of over 90 creepy locations. The trail welcomes “all paranormal-curious, eerie explorers and those engrossed with ghosts.”
Travelers can find safe, “non-haunted” places to stay at www.AAA.com/Travel and plan out your journey at www.AAA.com/TripTik where you can plot your route and stay socially distant with AAA’s COVID-19 guidelines. AAA travel consultants can help with any travel arrangements in-person, over the phone or via a virtual meeting.
As Upstate New York’s largest member services organization, AAA Western and Central New York provides more than 887,000 members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1900, AAA has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. Visit AAA at www.AAA.com.