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GHOST TOWN: Investigators of the unexplained convene for OKC’s Paracon 2017 event

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Paracon 2017 will be held November 17th through the 19th at the Sheraton Downtown and Overholser Mansion.
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OKLAHOMA CITY— As the founder of the Oklahoma Paranormal Association, Tanya McCoy feels a duty to teach people about the dangers of improperly communicating with the other side, but not in the way that many might think.

McCoy started Paracon, Oklahoma City’s premier paranormal convention, five years ago as a gathering for “anyone that is interested in the paranormal, whether it be ghosts, bigfoot or aliens.” But, in recent years, she’s come to learn that some of the deadliest close encounters come from the uneducated masses, right here on our own earthly plane of existence.

Considering much of Paracon a “teaching tool,” McCoy uses the event to help guide paranormal explorers, new and otherwise, through the legal ramifications of what they’re doing wrong and how it can ruin the reps of everyone involved in the paranormal sciences.

“We have people out there, especially since these paranormal shows have come out, that tend to just pop-up overnight and create their own teams,” McCoy said. “In doing that, a lot of them are actually crossing onto private property, trespassing, and breaking and entering…they don’t know the importance of getting permission to go on these sites. It’s causing a lot of problems out there for those of us who are in this field to study and research.”

McCoy added just because a place might look abandoned, it’s probably not, reiterating stories of people who’ve been arrested, shot at and, in the cases of many dilapidated structures, seriously hurt. Of course, there’s also the aspect of dealing with forces many people are unprepared and untrained to deal with that can hurt a paranormal explorer not just “physically, but spiritually as well.”

“Many people go out there and they don’t know what they’re doing,” McCoy warned. “There are things you have to consider when you go into this field; you need to understand you have a chance of taking something home with you, so the big thing we teach, our number one rule, is we don’t disrespect the dead. Unlike the investigators on TV that provoke to get a reaction, we do not provoke. You wouldn’t walk into a living person’s house and do that because it’s disrespectful. Just because someone has passed on, they’re still there…why would you disrespect them like that?”

Bringing in several different speakers, investigators and teachers every year, Paracon has become a successful source of info and education for the state’s burgeoning paranormal community which has seen something of a rise in the past two decades.

“Oklahoma has always had a haunted history, it’s just that it’s only really starting to be more accepted,” McCoy said. “Even when I was younger, this stuff was hush hush, it just wasn’t talked about and you were crazy if you believed in it. Of course, we’re also in the Bible Belt, so we’re a little slow in the uptake on certain things, but we’re getting there. We are, relatively speaking, a newer state, but we’ve still had a lot of things that have happened in our history, many things we are only now discovering.”

Paracon OKC 2017 will be held November 17th through the 19th at the Sheraton Downtown, 1 N. Broadway Ave. with a special meet and greet at the Overholser Mansion that Friday night. In addition to a wide array of speakers, investigators and educators, there will also be numerous vendors and booths for guest perusal. For event and ticket info, go here:

Paracon 2017 kicks-off with a meet and greet at the historic Overholser Mansion on Friday, Nov. 17. (Alicia Fraire / Red Dirt Report) 

“It’s a good learning and teaching tool,” McCoy reiterated. “It offers something different that’s not very wide-ranged in this area yet. A lot of people don’t even know events like this are being offered and when I tell them, people say “Oh my gosh, I didn’t know that kind of stuff existed here.” But that’s changing; Paracon is growing more and more every year, and people enjoy coming out and sharing their experiences and learning more about the paranormal.”

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Louis Fowler

Güicho. Gadfly. Chicano. Choctaw. Cristero. Freelancer. Leftist. Activist. Vilified. PKD....

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Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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