LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - The Ghosts of Lincoln Bus Tours are now in their 21st year of navigating the streets. The father-daughter led tours take passengers around the city of Lincoln for about three hours, all while telling ghost stories and sharing paranormal experiences.
Ghosts of Lincoln Bus Tours take place aboard a 50-passenger motor coach (SOURCE: Kamri Sylve).
It started out as a guy driving people around in his station wagon telling ghost stories. In 1998, Dale Bacon and Scott Colborn started what's now known as The Ghosts of Lincoln Bus Tours. From a car, to a van, to a school bus, the haunted tours have been growing ever since.
It's a bus ride that happens 19 nights a year. A dad wearing a Hawaiian shirt, his daughter and her peace sign take people through the most haunted places in Lincoln, leading up to Halloween.
Many people believe places like the Nebraska State Penitentiary, the State Capitol, and Wyuka Cemetery are all haunted. The father-daughter tour guides collect stories from past and present passengers and share them with passengers aboard the bus. People travel from Omaha, South Sioux City, Hastings, Grand Island and more just to hear these tales.
Stories like seeing figures standing and staring out of windows and seeing tables flip upside down by themselves are some of the many ghost stories Scott tells.
At Scott's favorite stop on the tour, he shares a personal story. Tabitha Assisted Living Gracepointe in Lincoln used to be an orphanage in the 1880's. Scott's mother was staying at Tabitha a few years ago before she passed away. She and many other people at Tabitha reported hearing young kids laughing and running through hallways late at night. For those who were passing away, they said hearing the orphans gave them comfort and joy and eased their pain. In October 2019, a Tabitha employee went on a tour. She says she's had to talk to families whose loved ones report hearing these laughing children.
Tour navigator Melissa Colborn says, "It's been a very eye-opening experience and definitely, since I've been riding since I was nine-years-old and now being 25 and still riding and still being a part of the tour now. It's been, definitely, a cool experience kind of growing into this."
Scott's daughter Melissa says hearing different people's paranormal experiences and having some of her own opens her mind to the unknown and the unseen.
Tour guide Scott Colborn says, "This is incredible stuff. This is incredible news that we have these extraordinary experiences being reported by so many people across Lincoln that go back in, sometimes, multi-generations."
If you ride the bus multiple times, it's not unusual to hear brand new stories on every ride. First-time rider Lyle Wilsey tells 10/11 he's had his own experiences with paranormal activity and his first ride made him believe it even more, "I enjoy that type of stuff. I am a follower of paranormal stories and stuff. I thought it was just fantastic. This is the first time we've been on it, and we've been wanting to go on it for a while. Thumbs up."
The Ghosts of Lincoln Bus Tours happen both at night and during the day. Although the night tours have a spookier ambiance, day-time tours allow passengers to see everything more clearly.
The Ghosts of Lincoln Bus Tours are an an annual October tradition for many passengers. Scott tells 10/11 one woman usually rides with them five or more times each year. She says the stories are always interesting, and she discovers new things each time she goes.
Scott says his tours are different than Hollywood horror you see on TV. He tells 10/11 many of his stories are reports from loved ones of the past.
Scott explores the idea that "Love has no boundaries," since many of his stories told on the bus are messages or signs from deceased loved ones letting their family know they're okay.
Unfortunately, Ghosts of Lincoln Bus Tours are sold out for the rest of 2019, but if you sign up for the private e-mail list, you can be one of the first people to secure your tickets for tours happening in 2020.
You can sign up for the ticket launch happening in late August of 2020 here.