Haunted Places Around UCI
As the holiday of haunts nears, it’s no wonder why scary stories are making their way around campus.
One, in particular, spooks people to this day. We have all been down Campus Drive, whether we’re driving to school or on a leisurely walk through the Wildlife Refuge. But what occurred on this street many years ago is anything but pleasant.
The strip of land between University and Jamboree, David Ritter, a third-year psychology and social behavior major explained, was the site of a murder. ‘It was all foggy and weird,’ he said. ‘Some guys in a car hit [a girl] because of the fog. But they didn’t stop to help her; they just left her there. Now, when the fog rolls in, she walks along the road. Only guys can see her or she appears in the back seat of cars that only have guys in them.’
According to Vishakha Mittal, a third-year business economics and sociology major, the story is a bit different. She says that at two in the morning on a foggy night, the handprints of the murdered girl will appear on the car’s window or on the rearview mirror if drivers flicker their headlights.
Mittal tried it, but nothing happened. Perhaps that is because only boys are subject to this horror.
Others say that it is the mother of the murdered girl who knocks on the car window and asks if the driver has seen her little girl.
Being that this area of land is so vast, there are many possible locations in which the accident could have occurred. It may have been on the other side of the refuge, barricaded by a rickety old fence. Either way, nobody will ever know the truth behind the murder of a young girl or the distraught mother who still searches for her.
Mesa Court Residence Hall: Prado
In the 1970s, a student committed suicide in her room in Prado, a residence hall in Mesa Court. Purportedly, she was a dance major living in one of the single rooms in Prado, one of the two art halls in Mesa Court. Rumors say that before her suicide, she had been stressed out for an upcoming dance audition, and hanged herself from the ceiling fan of her room.
Although her window blinds were down, people outside could see her silhouette spinning. However, they thought she was practicing her dance routine. Eventually, residents from a neighboring hall noticed that she was hanging from a rope.
Some claim that the dorm is haunted and sometimes residents can still hear her.
Vicky Vong, a first-year biological sciences major and resident of Prado hasn’t experienced any paranormal occurrences at her dorm. However, she said, ‘Some of my suite mates and I get jumpy when we hear the bathroom door creak open.’
Some people she knows have had unusual experiences living there.
‘My suite mate heard someone calling her name at night and thought it was her roommate, but her roommate was sleeping,’ Vong said.
The dorm did not seem to have an eerie feeling. Although yellow caution tape lines the front doors, Prado seemed like any other UCI campus dorm.
Irvine High School Theatre
By Pamela Won
Recognized as one of the most haunted places in California, Irvine High School’s drama department is known for students reporting contact with the spirit of a young drama student who died tragically under mysterious circumstances in the 1970s.
To this day, people who work in the theater area at night swear that the friendly ghost of the former student sits in the seats in the middle of the theater in the form of a faint green glow. With my good friend Adam Macias, a fourth-year drama major at Orange Coast College, I drove to Irvine High School at 10 p.m. to see if the stories were true.
Adam almost didn’t come with me to the school; he had woken up from a disturbing nightmare hours before I had called to confirm our drive to the haunted area.
‘No matter what you see or hear tonight, don’t respond to it,’ he said. ‘If you do, whatever it is, it will haunt you and your family for the rest of your life.’
We walked onto the school campus through a door that was surprisingly left wide open. To our far right we heard the sound of tennis balls bouncing back and forth in the courts. We walked in the direction of the courts and then toward the gym and the football field. Having no map, we decided to cut through the field to get to a large building we assumed to be the infamous theater.
As we walked, I couldn’t help but feel goose bumps. The interior of the theater building was very dark and still. We made small talk about Adam’s past experiences with eerie ghosts in his house and my experience with a Ouija board in my first year at the dorms.
All of a sudden, I distinctly heard a very feminine sigh behind me. It was definitely not the squeaking of shoes against the concrete or the sound of tennis balls slapping against rackets.
Instinctively I turned and felt a cold chill pass by me for a split second. I took a closer look inside the theater and observed a black curtain that was mostly open. I turned to my friend and peeked into the dark building again, where the curtain was now only open halfway. Intrigued, I kept staring until my friend grabbed my arm and pulled me back