2017 Spirits Alive FAQ


Is the Tour scary?

No! It’s historical, informative, occasionally sad, often humorous, frequently heartwarming.

Is it suitable for children?

Yes, but children (and adults!) need to be able to pay attention, navigate the path, and not create distractions. The Spirits need the quiet attention of their visitors so that everyone in the group can hear their stories. In addition, the total length of the tour is approximately 1-1/2 hours. Keep in mind, all visitors, regardless of age, must have tickets to participate.

How does the Tour work?

Groups assemble at the old entrance to Cheshire Hillside Cemetery (outside the big iron gate).  Two guides then take each group around the cemetery from Spirit to Spirit to hear the tales of the dearly departed. Groups depart every 15 minutes. You should plan to arrive 10 minutes prior to your Tour time, to check-in and make sure you don’t get left in the lurch!

How many Spirits will be present on this year’s Tour?

Eight stops will highlight 11 Spirits this year.

Where do you find these stories?

We sift through often-musty books, diaries and letters. We also surf the web, looking through old newspapers, obituaries, court documents, census rolls, deeds, birth, marriage and death certificates and other sources.

Are the stories all true?

Every person portrayed was a real person. Each story is a dramatic interpretation of the facts that we unearth. In many cases, we only know basic facts or one side of a story. To create a cohesive presentation, we may have to make reasonable assumptions about the person’s point of view, based on the circumstances of his or her life. Sometimes, facts are lost to time. In those situations, we use history as our guide to connect the dots. You can learn more about our process for developing individual stories by attending our Conversations from the Grave presentation at the Historical Society.

Will there be food or beverages available on the Tour?

The Historical Society may sell bottled water outside the cemetery gates. However, no other food or beverages will be available for sale to the public (if you smell enticing aromas, they will likely be coming from the food prepared to keep the Spirits alive). You are welcome to bring your own hot chocolate or other similar beverage to keep yourself warm!

Where is parking available?

Parking is available at the Watch Factory Shops, the Grange, and Town Hall.

Does rain or snow or other inclement weather cancel or postpone the show?

In general, the shows will go on – rain or shine or snow or cold. In the unusual event that a postponement is necessary, this information will be provided on the Cheshire Historical Society website.

Are tickets refundable?

Tickets are not refundable, even if the event is postponed due to inclement weather. However, tickets are transferable.

May tickets be purchased at the gate?

A limited number of tickets may be available at the gate. However, to avoid disappointment, we recommend that tickets be purchased in advance via the Cheshire Historical Society website.

Other important information:

  • Please dress appropriately for weather.
  • Wear sturdy comfortable shoes.
  • After sundown, the cemetery will be dark. Mason jars light up the Path but it still can be dark. Spirits will not be in full light. Flashlights are recommended.
  • There will be no rest room facilities available.
  • Spirits do not have microphones.
  • Visitors need to be able to see in low light, hear unmagnified voices and navigate a sometimes-uneven path.
  • Some Spirits will have a few chairs at their stations.