November 12, 2007
Ghosts: Minnesota's Other Natural Resource
By Brian Leffler
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing (October 2007)
Pages: 160 - Price: $14.95
Interview by Jeff Belanger
Ghostvillage.com author interview
Brian Leffler has been exploring the ghosts of Minnesota with the Northern Minnesota Paranormal Investigators since 2002. He's also a regular contributor to Ghostvillage.com and one of our community board moderators. We caught up with Brian to ask him a few questions about his first book, Ghosts: Minnesota's Other Natural Resource.
What first got you interested in researching the paranormal?
Brian Leffler: I first got interested after living in haunted houses. I was beside myself as I never believed in ghosts in any way. It was only after having repeated experiences that I could not explain did I begin to believe that there is more to life than what what I could see in front of me. I began to research, slowly at first, and then began actually investigating. The first real investigating I did was actually EVP collection.
When did you officially launch your group, Northern Minnesota Paranormal Investigators and what's your group's objective?
N.M.P.I. officially launched as it exists today in early 2002. Before that I investigated for quite some time on my own without a group. The objective of our group is simply to do the very best job we can possibly do in two areas:
1. To help others deal with their situation whether they are haunted or not.
2. To collect the best possible paranormal evidence that stands up to scrutiny.
What is Minnesota's most active haunt?
That is a difficult question. Since even the most active haunts can be quiet at times, it is always tough to tell. The most active one that we have experienced so far would have to be the Chase on the Lake. We had constant things happening to everyone on the team in that location. It was a blast!
What's one of your funnier moments during an investigation?
I will probably get killed for this but I can't resist. During the investigation in Grand Marais, one of the guys on our team got an itch. Well, it was more of a compromising position and being it was dark, he figured he was safe to take care of the itch. Well, we did remind him that our infrared cameras can see in the dark but only after the entire team and the homeowner got a great chuckle out of watching him!
Do you have a favorite haunt in Minnesota that you come back to again and again? If so, where and why?
Our favorite locations like the Chase on the Lake, we unfortunately don't get to repeat when we like. One of our new favorites that we do have this luxury of repeating very often is the Lyric Opera House in Virginia, Minnesota. You will have to wait until the sequel to read about it. It is a great place that had people such as Mae West, Roy Rogers, and Trigger perform there.
Is there one region of Minnesota that seems to have more than its share of hauntings?
I really don't think so. I believe that everywhere people have lived and died make great places for ghosts. I think that there are wonderful stories of haunts just waiting to be discovered around every corner.
Can you describe a typical investigation into an historic haunt for you?
Well, we do things a little bit backward than most groups do, I think. We like to go into a location as cold as possible since we use both science and para-science to conduct an investigation. We like to see what our psychics pick up at the location as well as document any paranormal evidence. After we have done all of this we hit the historical records and see what we can confirm. This way we don't contaminate anyone.
What team do you think has the best shot at winning the Super Bowl this year?
I think the team with the best coaching, the most talent, and a winning record will win the Super Bowl. I do know that it will not be the Minnesota Vikings yet again!