Highlights from 90-min. Mount Dora Ghost Walk

By Allison Walker, Entertainment Reporter/Anchor
Last Updated: Friday, October 31, 2014, 3:04 PM EDT

At the Lakeside Inn in Mount Dora, you'll rarely find a day when no one's sitting in a rocking chair, soaking up the sunset only "obstructed" by a seaplane. But behind that beauty is a rich history of hair-raising ghost stories - told best by guide Andrew Mullen.

Mullen - who's exceptional at staying in character and incorporating surprising wit - is in charge of the ghost tour, now in its third year.

He starts the tour inside the lobby of the Lakeside Inn, which was built in 1883. Accompanied by his silent assistant (who performs sneaky jobs throughout the tour) Mullen tells us about the building's history and famous visitors.

Before we get to the stairs, he points out a panel of wood on the floor that used to be a speakeasy. And, of course, there's ghost story there.

"[The barkeep's] ghost is said to preambulate up through the floor and over to Tremain's [Tavern] where he would sit at the bar and order some Barbados Rum or Canadian Club Whiskey," said Mullen.

Armed with a beeswax candle, we are taken through the halls and to Room 300.

"You see, Al Capone stayed here because it was near and exit," Mullen explained. "He could make a quick getaway."

Inside that room, he says a chambermaid died on the bed.

"The book fell to the ground," he acted out. "She fell back into the bed and died of a broken heart."

In another story, a sister returned to this same room to recover this decomposed doll her twin had hidden from her. Probably not the best idea.

"Cujie [the doll] had his head to her neck and had drained all the blood from her body," he demonstrated, holding on to the most horrifying doll I've ever seen.

Venturing outdoors, we encountered several more eerie discoveries.

"You are standing in front of the Mount Dora Hanging Tree," he announced, explaining that the morbid scene drew crowds - and picnics!

But there was a horrifying twist.

"The faces they saw in the hanging trees were not of strangers, but faces of either themselves or other people in the crowd."

From a haunted attic, to our ghost meters going off like bonkers, you can experience this ongoing ghost walk Saturdays at 8 p.m.

Mount Dora Ghost Walk
Email: royellou@gmail.com
Cost is $10 per person over 12; $5 under 12