Now, who could be afraid of a ghost with a name that sounds like she could be Lucy Ricardo's best friend?

The Kalamazoo Civic Theater has a spirit by the name of Thelma Mertz. The ghost has been there for decades, with its name being given during the 1980's by actors in the Civic Summer Theater. These same actors also came up with the ghost's origin. Their version of the tale says "Thelma" was an actress whose lover was cheating on her and eventually dumped her, which caused her to commit suicide by leaping off the balcony. That's their story.

The Civic Players have been using the theater since 1931 and ghostly happenings have happened ever since. For example:

The piano plays by itself, lights go off by themselves, footsteps are heard walking across the stage with nobody there, there's a feeling of someone lurking over your shoulder, items get moved from place to place, doors open and close,  a camera monitor captured the figure of a trench-coated person on an empty stage, an apparition of a woman in a long black dress, music coming from nowhere, and more incidents.

 

 

The ghost is thought to be a past member of the Civic Players who finds it hard to leave the past behind. Whether the ghost is male or female is not known but the name "Thelma Mertz" will stick, regardless. The paranormal activity continues to this day and the mortals inside the theater are happy to tell you about the immortals that accompany them.

The theater is located at 329 S Park Street W, Kalamazoo.

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