HISTORIC HAUNTED: It's always interesting to see how an historic home or business, a noble, fact-filled place that's been firmly part of a community for several decades, approaches its reputation for having ghosts. You have some places that would rather those particularly colorful, particularly spooky legends remain in the background, lest they add noise and distraction to the family trees and artifacts on display while other places, though fewer, will go far in the opposite direction, becoming very much about ghost tours. The Whaley House in San Diego has walked, in great style, the line between each road. It is very much an Old Town landmark, full of tales of 19th-century California and the settling of the area (and, of course, the family who called it home: The Whaleys). But it embraces its haunted rep -- which is quite large, if you've ever watched any ghost-based cable show ever -- with cheek and aplomb. The Whaley's Facebook wall is apt to have a cute wraith cartoon or photo, and it schedules ghost tours throughout the year. And especially in October.
A VERY WHALEY OCTOBER: Not only do the landmark's spirited house strolls continue throughout the spookiest of months, but the house keeps later hours starting on Thursday, Oct. 25. The Whaley'll be open thorugh 10 p.m. on a few of the Halloween-close nights, and midnight the weekend before (as well as Halloween itself). We ourselves have never encountered something ethereal there, but it seems just about every time we visit the group ahead of us is all a-chatter at spying something spooky. Maybe October'll our month? Here's hoping it is yours, ghost hunter.