Interested in investigating the paranormal but too afraid of ghosts?
Tune in to MavRadio’s Haunted Heartland Broadcast airing on October 28th from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and fear no more. With investigations on local murders, mediums and mysteries, listeners are going to be able to get insider information on Nebraska haunts from the comfort of their living rooms. The annual broadcast is purely for entertainment, according to MavRadio faculty advisor Jodeane Brownlee.
“It plays into the atmosphere of Halloween,” Brownlee said. “Students dispel myths and research events, past or present, that folks in the community may or may not even know about.”
The project serves as an opportunity for radio/audio II students to execute investigative reports and practice live reporting. Some examples of investigations done in the past include the murder of UNO student Carolyn Nevins, Omaha’s Hummel Park, the mystery of the Black Angel, Ouija boards and a live reading with medium Jess Coleman. However, not everything the students investigate is paranormal.
In past years, students have also covered The Rocky Horror Picture Show and its impact on the LGBTQ community, the history of Vala’s Pumpkin Patch, how to make affordable DIY Halloween costumes and covered popular Halloween movies. This year, according to Brownlee, students will be investigating topics like life after death, the Squirrel Cage Jail, a local haunted pub, the accuracy of Ouija boards and the psychology of imaginary friends. Alex Abbler, sports director for MavRadio, is looking forward to being a host for the upcoming broadcast and hearing students’ stories.
“The creepier, the better,” Abbler said. He’s also excited for the challenge of hosting on-air for three continuous hours. Abbler said he’ll have to constantly be on his toes. However, with all the interesting and creepy topics, Abbeler knows he’ll have good material to keep him going.
“Personally, I want to get freaked out too,” Abbler said. Abbler urges students to tune in on October 28th in order to get a “live, real, and in-person radio show.”
He hopes the work he and his classmates have done within researching their topics is well received by the community.
“Everything that’s real radio is good radio,” Abbler said.
According to Brownlee, these radio students are competing with nationally ranked college radio stations and are continuously beating the competition. As for the Haunted Heartland Broadcast, its become a foundation in MavRadio’s annual programming.
“It’s these students’ passion and dedication to broadcasting that makes us a national award winning radio station,” Brownlee said The broadcast will also be covering the Rural Investigators of the Paranormal’s live ghost hunt on UNO’s campus and will include live reports from Hummel Park.
Through the years, Haunted Heartland Broadcast has been gaining listeners and recognition. “We’ve gotten more and more engagements on social media,” Brownlee said, “and we’ve also won an honorable mention in the Broadcast Education Association Festival of Media Arts competition for best live event.”
MavRadio’s Halloween broadcasts have also earned Nebraska Broadcasters Association awards for best promotional announcement and a Midwest Broadcast Journalist Association Award for a story on the haunting of Bellevue Library.