An October night on State Street in Brule. Is this creepy enough for you?

An October night on State Street in Brule. Is this creepy enough for you?

Nebraskans, unfortunately, do not have a lot of landscapes to take the breath away or inspire long journeys. Alas, our state lacks many of the frills of Colorado or even parts of Wyoming. But though we make lack the awe-inspiring paint pots, buffalo herds, and mountains of Yellowstone, Nebraskans still have Halloween.


John and I are die-hard travelers. We’ve been to over 30 countries, most of them third-world and only partially civilized. We like to walk on the wild side when we travel because it’s dull to always know what’s going to happen. There’s no bigger yawn than to set out on a pre-planned journey with every step of the way padded and paved to go see a bunch of attractions that have already been photographed ad nauseum by other people since the camera was first invented. It’s the Not-Knowing that makes travel fun. Which is why people today are planning off-the-beaten path journeys like Halloween Road Trips that force them to have once-in-a-lifetime experiences worth talking about.


Nebraska may not be filled with Grand Canyons or Rocky Mountains, but we do have plenty of haunted houses filled with real ghosts…places like the Buffalo Bill Cody House in North Platte, or Boot Hill in Ogallala.


Luckily, School District 13 Haunted Attraction is located near some of the most haunted locations in the state. Ogallala was once a wild western town filled with outlaws, cowboys, and brothels. The city of Grant, a grain-producing area with an entirely different culture but only about 20 miles away looked down its nose at Ogallala with its vagrant cowboys and prostitutes. At Boot Hill Cemetery, located on the edge of Ogallala, just 7 miles from Brule, cowboys were buried with their boots still on (thus the name), but the souls of these men are restless. Visit Boot Hill on a quiet night and you’ll likely capture some evidence of life-after-death. We recommend combining a trip to Boot Hill in Ogallala with an evening at School District 13 Haunted Attraction in Brule. If you’re heading east back to Kearney, Omaha, or Lincoln, plan your trip to stop in North Platte at Buffalo Bill Cody’s house (another of the more famous haunted places in Nebraska) on your way back the following day for a full course of The Strange and Unusual.


Of course, there are haunted locations on the eastern end of Nebraska too, but the haunts in Ogallala and North Platte are accessible and fun. The haunted Mansion on the Hill is only a few blocks from Boot Hill in Ogallala. You’d have to call ahead to make sure they’ll be open when you make your trip to Brule for School District 13, but you could easily hit both of these haunts in the same night. The Old Brule School is itself, a haunted location too. Spirits transition through the school, ringing doorbells and pushing books off the shelves when they get restless. Doing a Halloween road trip to the western end of the state offers tons of possibilities…and the people out west near Brule have some wild stories to tell about the paranormal. We recommend regular stops at convenience stores along the way to ask the clerks about local haunts. You might end up with some crazy stories if you add this to your repertoire.


So this year, as you contemplate Halloween party ideas that will wow your friends and family, consider a one-day road trip that takes in a haunted attraction like School District 13 along with a smattering of real haunted houses and locations like Mansion on the Hill, Boot Hill, or the haunted Buffalo Bill Cody House in North Platte. Visit the web site for information about haunted locations along your route of travel and prepare yourself for some fun and unexpected twists. You’ll never forget your Halloween road trip in Nebraska.