It was shrieks, creaks and ghostly images, Saturday, as the Texas Society of Paranormal Investigators attended Le Festival D’Esprits. Louisiana’s first paranormal convention, hosted by La. Spirits. The event was attended by groups from all over Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Georgia.

Held in the historic Shreveport Municipal Auditorium on Elvis Presley Blvd., those that were fortunate enough to get VIP tickets were treated with an investigation of the auditorium after the convention concluded.

One of the big draws to the event was a member of TAPS of Ghost Hunters fame. Kristyn Gartland is not always on the show, but has been a member of The Atlantic Paranormal Society for 10 years.

She joined the group after becoming a client, when things kept happening in her home. Where most people might have “Grandma Edna” or a previous owner hanging around, Gartland’s spirit happened to be of the inhuman kind.

She admits she foolishly used a Ouija board to try and contact her grandmother when she died. Gartland warned the crowd of how big a mistake that was. 

When not on an investigation with TAPS, Gartland travels to conventions and teaches Paranormal 101. She had lots of good advice for the fledgling group.

A close friend of hers also spoke at the gathering, world renowned demonologist, John Zaffis of the Paranormal Research Society of New England. He has advised and participated in many shows on the subject and has a museum of haunted objects that he has collected through the years.

Dan Mewhinney of SoCal PRS shared a wealth of EVPs (electronic voice phenomenon) he has collected through the years, from all over the country. Most of the TSPI group voted him as their favorite presenter.

Noted parapsychologist, educator and author, Loyd Auerbach, not only covered spirits, but touched on UFOs (Unidentified Flying Objects) Quantum tunneling, remote viewing and the government Stargate Project. He presented the science behind the theories.

Bob Hunnicutt of the Georgia Ghost Society and Pete Haviland of the Lone Star Spirits were also presenters that morning.

Kalila Smith and Gina Vega came from New Orleans and gave presentations on Voodoo, which is a religion commonly practiced in that area.

The Louisiana Spirits served up a free lunch of jambalaya.

Don Dennis, founder of the local group, came home energized and started to make plans for TSPI’s convention to be held in Beaumont in March next year. “I’m excited,” he said. On the phone since he came home Sunday, he has already lined up many guest speakers, including “Miss Hester,” manager of the famous Myrtles Plantation in Louisiana.

For more information on the Texas Society of Paranormal Investigators check out To purchase tickets to their convention next year, click here.

About Penny LeLeux

Penny has worked at The Record Newspapers since 2006. A member of the editorial staff, she has "done everything but print it." Most frequently she writes entertainment reviews and human interest stories, with a little paranormal thrown in from time to time.She has been a lifelong member of the Orangefield community.