Experiencing the paranormal
By Anna Erickson
Many people believe in spirits or paranormal activities and one woman has been documenting it for several years at her home on Big Mantrap Lake.
Karen Remund believes that spirits exist and that they aren’t anything to be afraid of.
“I think God wants us to know that we don’t have to be afraid of death,” she said.
And she’s not the only person who believes in spirits.
Anytime she brings up a story of having lights turn on and off at all times of the night or hearing something upstairs when she knows no one is there, someone else inevitably has a similar story to tell.
“I just think it’s fascinating,” Remund said. “There’s a message for people that spirits are here to watch over us.”
Remund grew up visiting Park Rapids and Big Mantrap Lake in the summer. She met her late husband, Robert, one summer and they later owned Trail’s End Lodge on Big Mantrap Lake before retiring.
Karen and Robert moved permanently to the resort in 1991 and operated a bed and breakfast on the property from 1997-2004.
It was during the years operating the bed and breakfast that Karen first began to notice paranormal activity. Guests would report unusual noises in the lodge.
After closing the bed and breakfast, Karen and her husband made it their home. Karen continues to live there.
At first she didn’t think too much about spirits, Karen said.
“I was in here one night and heard footsteps upstairs,” Karen said. “I thought ‘well, no one is up there.’”
She went to check and didn’t find anyone. The doors were locked from the inside as well.
There wasn’t a lot of activity before 2006, though.
After her daughter, Prema, died in 2005 paranormal activity increased at the house.
The Rose Room, which is one of the guest bedrooms, continues to be a source of unusual activity.
“We installed a chandelier in our guest bedroom in 2006 and it has a dimmer switch,” Karen said.Shortly after we hung the light it started turning on and off in the middle of the night.”
She began writing down instances of paranormal activity with dates and times after that. To date, Karen has more than 300 pages of documented activity in her house.
Much of the activity is lights turning on and off but there are other stories as well.
A vacuum cleaner shorted out and mysteriously worked again, for example.
“Any electrical problems we had would automatically be fixed,” Karen said.
Her theory is that her father is still present in the house. He could fix anything and she thinks he’s still looking after her.
Another time a music box started playing when no one was around.
Whenever Karen read a letter out loud that was written by her husband, the thermostat would flicker between temperatures. Others have witnessed this happen in her house.
Three paranormal groups have been to Karen’s home over the years to witness activity.
One group witnessed some activity. They heard four men talking in the office and smelled pipe tobacco. Karen’s father smoked a pipe so she thinks it could have been him.
Also, after taking photos in the house, the paranormal group discovered the reflection of a dog outside a window.
“I thought it could have been Jesse, a dog we used to have,” Karen said.
That also could explain why one of her dogs now likes to spend time in the basement.
“Shasta could like spending time in the basement if Jesse is down there too,” Karen said.
While Karen understands that not everyone embraces paranormal activity, she can’t think of any other explanation for these activities.
“It’s not scary or anything,” she said. “It’s actually comforting to know that spirits are here and watching over us.”
American culture is one of the last to think about spirits and paranormal activity, Karen said. Many other cultures have embraced it and she thinks people are coming around here too.