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Haunted Places in Tampa

Looks at three allegedly haunted places in Florida’s third largest city.

Tampa is the third largest city in Florida.  It has a population of 341,000 people with a total of 2.7 million in the surrounding Tampa Bay metro area.  The Tampa Bay Area includes St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and the counties of Pasco and Hernando.  A diverse city with large numbers of whites, blacks and Hispanics, Tampa is considered to be a very clean place and a great outdoor city.  It has a rich history and quaint neighborhoods, and unlike most Florida cities, a lot of tradition.

And with history and tradition come ghosts.

The most famous haunted place in town is the Tampa Theater.  The story goes that in the 1940s, a young man started working there as a projectionist.  He loved his job and worked there until he died in the 1960s, and then strange things started happening.  Employees say they sometimes hear chains and footsteps in empty hallways behind the stage.  Although there was no one there at the time, they see someone in the projector room.  Workers complain of being grabbed by the neck, and of drafts of icy air and sickening smells.

Another movie theater where strange things happen is the Britton Cinema.  Doors in the ladies room are said to shut and lock, and toilets flush when no one is there except for the terrified customer.  Throughout the years, managers have reported multiple ghosts in the upstairs theaters that used to be one huge balcony.  People have heard voices in the hall near Auditorium #3 late at night when there was nobody in the building.  A shadow figure on the wall followed an assistant manager up the hall one night, but no person.

Howard W. Blake Magnet High School for the Performing Arts is another one of Tampa’s most haunted places.  Its site used to be the location of a hospital many years ago.  Strangely, in many classrooms the temperatures drop to hospital conditions.  During a pep rally many years ago, a teacher died in the auditorium of a heart attack.  Ever since, whenever there is a pep rally, a cold spot can be felt when walking into the auditorium.  Another teacher died in the library and now when you are close to the tables near the back, you can feel a strange chill in your spine.  In the main theater, things go wrong every time a show is staged there.  People also report whistling, music and strange lights there.

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  1. mystery61

    On September 16, 2009 at 11:50 am


    Very interesting, I like reading about haunted places!

  2. Lauren

    On November 7, 2009 at 12:03 pm


    I go to Blake and the whole pep rally thing is fake and so id the library. But the Classrooms and Theater are totally creepy. There is definitly something in there

  3. Tiffany J L Alfonso

    On March 11, 2010 at 11:57 pm


    Woah – on that bit about Blake High School, I didn’t know it is haunted! My cousin attended and graduated from that school, and it’s odd to hear that you feel a cold spot when coming into a pep rally!

  4. Lydi

    On May 6, 2010 at 5:23 pm


    All of my children attend/have graduated from Blake. All are “techies” who work in both the main theater and the black box on a regular basis. They have witnessed “weird” things first hand. They have had something rush past them, down the spiral stairs in the black box. Something has repeatedly tapped, as if by fingernails, on the doors in the main stage balcony, as though some one wre impatiently waiting for them to leave. Lights have come back on the the theater, after my sone turned off the main switch to the boards, made sure no one was left in the theater and locked the doors. Something has untied their wrenches from their belt and dropped them from the catwalk to the stage floor. They have been pushed down the stairs and catwalks by unseen things. Just about all the Technical Theater studens have some similar story to tell.

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