BALLINGER, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – In a small town out west lies a building full of history, the wild west and paranormal activity.
In October 2015, an article was published about this hotel and the paranormal activity visitors had experienced. Dan Lafave, Co-owner of the Olde Park Hotel, was intrigued and reached out to tour the place.
“The building’s amazing, I said I loved being in historical places,” said Dan Lafave. “I definitely can feel the paranormal here.”
After learning it was for sale, Lafave turned to his wife who immediately said no. Later that year, they decided to purchase the building.
Connie Lafave, Co-owner of the Olde Park Hotel, shared with KTAB/KRBC the feelings she has while in the building.
“I hate making beds by myself up here, because I get the heebie jeebies when I’m making beds, I always feel like is watching me or standing right next to me,” said Connie Lafave.
Sometimes things happen that are not expected, like moving dolls, slamming the lid closed in the laundry room and seeing children who vanish. Dan and Connie Lafave have heard boots walking, ladies talking, men grunting, doors slamming and more.
“It is unnerving and scary in this building sometimes,” said Connie Lafave. “They like to play jokes with us.”
They believe these occurrences stemmed from the early 1900’s after the building was built around 1886 and 1900. In 1905, all the records of the place were destroyed in a flood.
This building has been a meeting place, school house, court house, a brothel twice and a hotel many times throughout its history. Many local outlaws were known to visit this place.
Six and a half years later, they have been featured on national paranormal shows and brought many groups of people in to share the experiences at the Olde Park Hotel.
Dan Lafave said the doll room is a very creeping area that many things have happened in. It started out by people donating dolls to the owners, then people started mailing haunted dolls to them. They now have 11 haunted dolls in the room.
Despite this room full of dolls, Dan Lafave said one of the craziest things that has happened to him occurred right after they purchased the building. After laying out the bed in the downstairs bedroom, Dan and Connie got ready for the first public ghost tour of the Olde Park Hotel.
“We don’t live here but we stay here with the groups during the weekends so we can monitor things,” said Dan Lafave. “We’ve never slept in this building before.”
After an exciting night of visitors, the doors were shut at midnight and Dan and Connie Lafave spent their first night in the hotel. They chose to try to stay up, but Connie Lafave drifted off to sleep.
“Great, something happens, I’m not going to have a witness,” Dan Lafave recalled thinking.
Everything seemed normal and he fell asleep. After three hours of sleep, he felt something
“I felt a caressing touch of a women’s hand on the backside of my head, rubbing her fingers through my hair,” said Dan Lafave.
He woke up and the first thing he saw was his wife’s back turned to him sound asleep. He tried to close his eyes but the hand moved again on the backside of his head. He rolled over to see what the hand was attached to.
“There was a women with dark, black, curly hair. He face was about 14-15 inches away from my head and she was bent over the bed, looking straight at me in the face,” Dan Lafave recalled.
Aside from the paranormal, this building holds a lot of historical value.
Dan and Connie Lafave hope that in 40 years, people can look back at this preserved building a take a step into the wild west. They hope that this legacy will continue to grow, and they can continue to share the story of the Olde Park Hotel.