HOOPER, Neb. (KPTM)- It's a story that could be told around a campfire, a haunted restaurant-with guests that never leave.
Welcome to the Iron horse, a 100-year old bar and restaurant in Hooper, Nebraska.
"It's exciting, if you don't believe in it-it's hard to envision it," said waitress and cook, Kathy Messier. "But when you do believer, and you've seen it and heard them, it's no question they're here."
Messier works in a bar full of a different kind of spirit. A bar, that paranormal investigator, Dave Christensen has investigated many times. "It's not a safe thing to do," said Christensen.
"You have to prove it to me, I want proof-you can't tell me something and think I'm gonna buy it," said Christensen.
Christensen finds extraordinary proof with ordinary tools. To capture spirits on film, he said, he uses a tape recorder, camera, and a laser grid. Christensen said he can shine the laser at night, and can see spirits pass through. "They're here now-I can feel them," said Christensen, during the interview.
The night before, Christensen camped out in the restaurant until two. During that, he captured multiple photos and sounds. "Spirits are everywhere-no matter where you go," said Christensen.
Messier has worked at the Iron Horse for 17 years. "We'd be sitting out here, just visiting, and you'd hear the bell ringing and there's no body in the kitchen," said Messier.
Messier said, just recently, she was cooking in the kitchen. "(I took) the heel of the bread and threw it over towards the garbage can," remembered Messier. "I turned around and was cooking and looked-and there was that piece of bread, on the floor next to me."
Dale Maurer owns the Iron Horse. "Years ago, my wife and I lived upstairs," remembered Maurer. "Heard someone walk up the stairs, get up look-nobody there. Went down to check the door-and the door is locked."
Christensen said, when he investigates places, he never stays past two. "Once you go past two, you start getting things, coming around you don't want."
Christensen toured the whole restaurant, even the basement. The night before, he caught one spirit audio, saying "Get out-go."
"A lot of times you stare into a mirror, you'll see something," said Christensen.
But what exactly are you seeing?
"Humans without bodies, that's all they are," said Christensen. "They're the same person you loved when they were alive."