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Spirits bringing history to life in Cambria County

Walking tours will take visitors back to the 1950s

By: Marc Stempka

EBENSBURG, Pa. A Cambria County community is bringing history back to life for a two-night event that will feature a nostalgic trip back to the 1950s.

The Cambria County Historical Society, based in Ebensburg, has planned two Spirit Night events on Friday and Saturday. The nights include hour-long walking tours through the heart of the towns Victorian downtown with 12 skits, featuring this years theme, The Nifty Fifties.

Guides will walk groups through the 10-block tours, beginning at the Cambria County courthouse and traveling through town with stops including the old Cambria County jail and the Cambria County Historical Society building.

Organizers said the event is not a haunted tour, but a historic tour, designed to be on the lighter side, featuring some skits based on factual historical information and some based on folk lore.

Organizers said some of the themes featured in this years event include a meeting of rival motorcycle gangs, a 1950s picnic, a sock hop, Johnny Wrecks into the Judges Car, and Jailhouse Rock, featuring dancers from Bertolinos School of Dance.

The Spirit Night events have been hosted before by the Cambria County Historical Society and are used as a fundraiser for the organization.

Reservations are required for the tours. The first tour each night leaves at 7:30 p.m. from the courthouse, with additional tours every 10 minutes through 8:30 p.m. Cost is $10 for adults and children 12 and under are $5.

Walk-ins will be accepted, if the tours are not sold out. Reservations can be made by calling the historical society at 814-472-6674, through their website at, or their offices at 615 N. Center St., in Ebensburg.

Organizers said the tours will take place regardless of the weather and walkers may want to bring flashlights for the later tours.

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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times