Florida is a state full of historical sights, but if you are looking to get into the Halloween spirit, the Sunshine State has some dark history, urban legends and spooky places.
ORLANDO, Fla. — (Sources: Weird U.S. | Abandoned Florida)
Have you ever heard of Sunland Hospital in Orlando? It served as a tuberculosis hospital and later evolved into a training center for children with special needs. The facility closed after allegations of abuse and neglect and health code violations.
The main patient building was turned into a park, and reports claim that ghostly patients still hang around. Park visitors reported hearing children's laughter when no children were around, and strange lights. Some also claim swings and other playground equipment move by themselves.
According to Abandoned Florida, after being torn down in 1999, all that remains of the Sunland facility is the old administration building.
There was a Sunland Hospital in Tallahassee, too. The location closed in the ‘80s, after reports of experiments and an apparent lawsuit filed claiming abuse occurred at the hospital.
The state of Florida closed all Sunland facilities in 1983.
LEGEND OF THE SKUNK APE
Skunk Ape is rumored to be an elusive humanoid and is considered Florida's Bigfoot.
There have been thousands of sighting of the Skunk Ape; so many that in 1977 the state Legislature introduced a bill to protect the man-ape.
Unfortunately, House Bill 58, also known as the Hugh Paul Nuckolls Skunk Ape Act, did not pass therefore leaving the Skunk Ape unprotected.
How can you tell if the Skunk Ape is nearby? Well, legend has it that it gives off a foul skunk-like odor, with some witnesses describing it as "extremely putrid."
Some locations where the Skunk Ape has been spotted are the Ocala National Forest, the Kissimmee River and on U.S. 27 near Hialeah Gardens, where a motorist claimed to have hit a large ape-like creature.
BROWNIE THE DOG
In Daytona's Riverfront Park, there is a small half-hidden tombstone that belongs to a dog named Brownie, according to Weird U.S.
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Brownie was rumored to be incredibly friendly with Daytona residents, and when he died, they buried him in the park.
Residents and visitors claim they have seen Brownie's ghost exploring the park.
THE DEVIL'S CHAIR
If you are ever in Lake Helen and are in the mood to test a scary legend, you can check out the "Devil's Chair."
Here is the legend, according to Weird U.S.: "If you sit in this big, brick chair at midnight, the Devil will communicate to you. The Prince of Darkness also enjoys a cold beer once in a while, for I'm told that if you place an unopened can of beer on the chair it will be empty the next morning. He's probably a pretty thirsty fellow after working in all that fire and brimstone."
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But on Halloween, guards are said to be posted at the Lake Helen Cemetery to keep pranksters and onlookers at bay.
Visit the chair…if you dare.
You can watch video from a visit to the Devil's Chair below:
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