Who’s Haunting Weiss?

A couple of weeks ago, a student had a harrowing experience inside the Weiss Center for the Arts. She explained her tale in an interview following the incident (she preferred to remain nameless out of fear of retaliation from the an evil spirit):

“It was around 10 PM on a weeknight that I ventured out to Weiss— I had to go in to work on an Art History project. A friend had jokingly warned me to be wary of any ghosts, but I just laughed and told them that was silly. As I approached the building, it looked really dark inside. My ID unlocked the front door and I stepped into the empty entryway. Right away I was spooked by the dead silence. I cringed as I opened the stairway door and it slammed behind me. When I opened the second-floor door, I was met with almost total darkness. I was scared, but I told myself it was irrational. I was going to do work in the Art and Art History study room, whose doorway is at the end of a long hallway. I approached the door slowly. Before I explain more, what you should know about the study room is that the door is always closed. It locks, so it’s accessible only to department professors and declared majors. So when I was about to reach for the doorknob and saw the door was open, I nearly screamed! I thought I saw something move inside the room too, so I turned around and ran away as fast as I could. I guess my friend was right, Weiss does have a ghost!”

This is just one of many similar testimonies about the 93-year-old building currently used by the Music, Art and Art History Departments and the Trout Gallery.  It’s now obvious that Weiss Center for the Arts has a secret: it’s haunted! Exactly who or what haunts Weiss is not certain, but it might have something to do with the building’s history. 

When Weiss first opened in 1929, and up until 1983, it was a gymnasium. It held a basketball court, locker rooms, showers and a swimming pool. But the building was renovated in 1983 to transform it into an arts building. Walls were constructed, vaulted ceilings lowered to make classrooms, and the former swimming pool area became the Trout Gallery. 

Did someone get lost in the Weiss gym and never find their way out? Maybe an old coach was cursed to visit Weiss in search of his former basketball team, which he never succeeded in finding. Or is it an animal — a cat or squirrel — who died during the 1983 construction who slinks through the empty building at night, opening doors to scare away visitors?

Left with many questions about the haunting, the administration advises students to stay away from Weiss at night!