Movie Stardom

La Grange residents on silver screen

Louisvillian McGill directs
movie about ghost hunting

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

(December 2010) – Hidden haunts and spooky spirits don’t seem to bother La Grange residents Farley Wollert and Jamie Best. Both have recently participated in a new movie that delves into the history and ghost stories surrounding three Kentucky landmarks.
The movie, “The Spirits of Bourbon Country,” focuses on the ghosts that reportedly haunt each location in Bardstown, Ky. Directed by Louisvillian Chris McGill, the film was edited by eight-time Emmy Award winner Drew Cook.

Jamie Beset, Christ McGill & Patti Starr

Photo provided

From left, Jamie Best with Chris
McGill and Patti Starr, each of whom
played a part in the making of the
movie, “The Spirits of Bourbon
County,” set in Bardstown, Ky.

The first location, The Chapeze House, was built circa 1789-1803 by Dr. Henri Chapeze, a French army officer and well-known physician in Bardstown. The Talbott Inn was built in 1779 and is said to be haunted by the ghost of Mrs. Talbot, wife of the owner. She can be seen by some as she floats in a white dress with long, brown wavy hair. The third location, The Jailer’s Inn, is haunted by Martin Hill who was sentenced to hang from the gallows in the courtyard behind the jail for shooting his wife.
Wollert, 37, got to know McGill through the annual Spirits of La Grange Ghost Tours and paranormal investigations in the area. As a graphic designer, Wollert’s talents were used to “design the packaging, art and provide music and a soundtrack for the movie,” he said.
Adding that this is the first time he has worked on a project like this, he said, “I take any challenge I can.” His goal is to write musical scores for movies because it is “a better use of my capabilities,” as a musician, he said.
“I grew up in a musical household,” said Wollert, who is originally from Louisville but has lived in Oldham County since 2000. “I decided it was more fun to write and record my own music.”
Wollert provided many spooky melodies for The Spirits of Bourbon Country. He is fond of Halloween, so this kind of spirit-filled project was perfect for him to undertake.
Best is a friend of his, and both are involved in design work. “This is the first time I have worked on a project like this,” she said. “It was a fantastic learning experience and so much fun.”
Best, a La Grange native said, “Chris McGill and I have known each other for some time, as we’ve worked together on paranormal investigations and Spirits of La Grange Ghost Tour Stake Outs in the past. The film was an idea he had and contacted me about working with the team on it.”
When asked by Discover Downtown La Grange to participate in their annual Ghost Tours, Best said she “jumped at the chance. I have had many paranormal experiences around town and love to tell the history and documented experiences, as well as my own personal experiences.” Best, 33, currently works with two local paranormal research teams, SPOOK and PROOV.
Wollert said he became involved with the Spirits of La Grange Ghost Tours through his sister-in-law. “She mentioned it and I auditioned to be a ghost tour guide,” he said. After giving a cold reading he was selected as a guide and also gives historic tours for Discover Downtown La Grange in the summer months.
“Chris McGill has been instrumental in the Sprits of La Grange ghost tours as well,” said Linda Goin, executive director for Discover Downtown La Grange. “Farley and Jamie both have been with the ghost tours for a number of years. They’re “elders” who often have managed the tours and the stake outs and have held the tours together this year through some management changes.”
Wollert said that a previous DVD by McGill about Louisville’s haunted Waverly Hills Sanitorium was “honest. He focuses on getting the facts straight, not the sensationalism of the story.”
McGill has worked as a disc jockey, a news anchor for WAVE-TV, has hosted a paranormal talk radio program, and runs his own production company, McGill Media. On Nov. 26, he appeared with Wollert and Best at Karen’s Book Barn & Java Stop in La Grange to promote the DVD.
The Spirits of Bourbon Country features world renowned paranormal investigator Patti Starr. She founded Ghost Chasers International Inc. in 1996 in Lexington, Ky., and has written a widely popular book, “Ghost Hunting in Kentucky and Beyond.”
A Certified Ghost Hunter, Starr is a full-time ghost hunter, lecturer, author, researcher, teacher and owner of Ghost Hunter Shop in Lexington. She has taught ghost hunting courses at Bluegrass Community and Technical College in Lexington since 2001. With more than 30 years of paranormal research and ghost investigations under her belt, Starr is a tour guide for the Bardstown Ghost Trek, which she began in 1997 in Bardstown, Ky.

• The Spirits of Bourbon Country can be purchased for $19.99 plus tax at Karen’s Book Barn & Java Stop or online at www.SpiritsofBourbonCountry.com.

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