Stories of George the ghost never seem to fade

Billie Jo Kubat

Billie Jo Kubat

As the hour of all Hallows’ Eve draws close, the ghosts and ghouls come out to play.

SDSU was founded in 1881, so are there any ghosts that haunt the halls of SDSU?

George is a local ghost who is said to haunt Doner Auditorium.

“George is said to either be a janitor who worked in the Administration Building who hung himself [off] the balcony or a little girl who fell [off] the balcony,” said Heather Slunecka, a senior communication studies and theatre major.

Slunecka has been a stage manager for plays for the past three-and-a-half years and has never had an encounter with George. But that does not mean that she does not believe in him.

One story in George folklore is the legend of the Elvis suit, Slunecka said.

One night, staffers were looking for an Elvis suit for Capers and could not find it. Later, during a thunderstorm, there was a loud crash and a container fell off a top shelf. The Elvis suit was found laid out perfectly with wig, jacket and all.

Geoff Nixon graduated last year with a communication studies and theatre degree. While he was here, the theatre program put on The Phantom of the Opera and had to remove one of the normal chandeliers and replace it with a chandelier that would come crashing down.

During the summer play practice for the show, the chandelier that had been removed and then later put back came crashing down onto the center of the stage. Some of the actors said the crash was George’s doing.

“I think it’s a bunch of foolishness, but I am willing to entertain the idea,” Nixon said. Ray Peterson, a theatre professor who has worked at SDSU for 39 years, has never been confronted by George, but he does believe in him.

“There used to be a pipe organ, but ever since it was removed, many of the run-ins with George stopped,” Peterson said.

Stories about George seem to come up every three to four years. Since the construction started on the Administration Building, George seems to have stopped spooking people. Peterson thinks the renovation could have scared George away.

While some people believe in the ghost, others do not.

“Personally, I have spent a great deal of time in Doner, and I have never had anything happen to suggest George exists,” said theatre professor J.D. Ackman.

To Ackman, Doner Auditorium is just a big empty room. Even though George is not real to Ackman, he does believe in ghosts.

Regardless of whether George is real, Slunecka said the theatre majors have fun blaming him for things that go missing.

#1.881311:2143730965.jpg:Front_Illustration.jpg::Brandon Van Westen#1.881310:3681293350.jpg:Doner2.1.jpg:Doner Auditorium , shown here, is an SDSU site rumored to be haunted. “George” is said to be the auditorium’s own spooky character.:Daniel Arch