Fort Lupton

                                                                                                                                                                         Weld County

                                                                                                                                                     Above historic photo:  {Btw/ 1890 - 1910}

                                                                                        Students occupy wooden desks as their teacher stands in the back of a room in the schoolhouse in Ft. Lupton.

                                                                                      The desks are near a large pot-bellied stove in the center of the room, and an electric light hangs from the ceiling.  

                                                                                                                                            Photo from: Denver Public Library Digital Collections.

The town of Ft. Lupton anchors the eastern side of a triangle with Boulder and Longmont, and is conveniently close to two of Colorado's major highways. A drive to Denver's International Airport takes only 30 minutes.

 In 1835, Lieutenant Lancaster Lupton rode through the Fort Lupton area with his First Dragoon Regiment. Envisioning a lively crossroads, the lieutenant returned a year later to build a trading fort. Business thrived until 1844, when a harsh
blizzard drove Lupton to California. The community remained empty until enterprising traders reopened the post in 1859. The area has come a long way. Although the community wasn't officially incorporated until 1974, today its 7,000
citizens have access to a recreation center that boasts a 139-foot waterslide and local farms produce some of the freshest tomatoes statewide.


Fort Lupton is proud of its history and is fortunate to have many of its historic commercial and residential buildings still in existence today. Along Denver Avenue, which serves as the City's historic main street, there are many excellent
examples of early 20th century commercial buildings. Additionally, there are a number residential blocks in the City that feature homes from the late 19th century and early 20th century. These historic properties are essential in helping us to
remember and appreciate our past as we also look forward to the future.



 Wholly Stromboli

Wholly Ghost: Paranormal society investigates Fort Lupton’s St. John building

By Gene Sears
Fort Lupton Press
Dec. 28, 2011

FORT LUPTON — Forks flying off of customer’s tables. Pictures coming off walls. Ghostly touches. Disembodied voices in the night.

These are just a handful of the strange occurrences reported within the walls of Fort Lupton’s St. John building over the past 13 months, since the
opening of Wholly Stromboli last November. Owner Melissa Rickman, a veteran of several paranormal experiences in the restaurant, said things
started to seem unusual during renovation of the building, when hardware or tools would come up missing, and contractors hungry for work on
portions of the restaurant work would drop their bids and leave, vowing not to return.

Ready for a night in search of the paranormal, the Boulder County Paranormal Society sets up shop in Wholly Stromboli, the Fort Lupton eatery
reputed to have strange goings-on since 2010 renovations.

“Mostly in the beginning it was things disappearing, you’d set something down and go back for it five minutes later and it was gone,” Rickman said.  
“We started getting at each other over it, but we quickly realized it wasn’t any of us. Things flying off tables and crashing to the floor. We had a pair
of computer speakers come unplugged and wind up on the floor.”

Things came to a head when kitchen staff witnessed an entire stack of pans sail off the edge of a countertop, scattering across the floor. Worse
yet, the customers began to notice strange things, reporting them to the wait staff, and prompting rumors that a spirit was up to mischief in the
restaurant. According to Rickman, these are just the antics of a paranormal entity she and the employees call ‘Edgar,’ after the late Edgar St. John,
early owner and renovator of the St. John, with whom Rickman shares a birth date.

Looking for some answers, Rickman opened the doors late in the evening of Dec. 16 to professional help in the form of The Boulder County
Paranormal Research Society. The BCPRS is a volunteer cadre of researchers viewing paranormal activity strictly from a scientific viewpoint,
looking more for substance than spirits, more hard evidence than ectoplasm. That’s not to say they don’t welcome nontraditional methods; on the
night the society investigated the St. John, a pair of ‘sensitives’ accompanied them from a sister society that utilizes psychic help.

The BCPRS staff, a tech-heavy assortment of IT professionals, engineers and technicians, take a focused, businesslike approach to their
research, arriving at the appointed time, equipment in tow, ready to operate. After a series of interviews with witnesses to the alleged paranormal
activity(s), the team sets up their gear, mapping out the location, obtaining temperature and electrical interference baselines and setting up audio
and frequency scanning devices to monitor specific areas. The team attempts to recreate, by normal means, the reported paranormal occurrences,
checking for drafts, unbalanced doors, unusual sound sources, machinery noise and potential sources of electrical disturbances.


Red wine, and spirits:  Boulder County Paranormal returns to Wholly Stromboli

By Gene Sears
Fort Lupton Press
Wednesday, March 7, 2012

BCPRS team member Kira Woodmansee takes baseline readings of the investigation area with Legacy High School student Hayley Reagin. Reagin
was along on the assignment as part of her senior project.

BCPRS team leader Joey Stanford gives a pre-investigation briefing to Kira Woodmansee in the “coal room,” the site of multiple unexplained

There are plenty of fine reasons for a return visit to Wholly Stromboli East Coast Eatery in Fort Lupton, most centering around the delicious food.
But for sheer chills, the Boulder County Paranormal Society’s second trip to the restaurant takes the cannoli.

In December, the group met at the popular restaurant amid reports of strange goings-on; pictures coming off of walls, forks flying from tabletops,
voices heard and touches felt by staff when no one else is around. During that session, the group, accompanied by sensitives and technicians from
the Other Side Investigations, picked up some interesting phenomena. The results prompted BCPS Co-Founder Richard Estep to comment on the
initial findings. He told Rickman it was the first time in a very long time that he walked away from an investigation and not used the words, “there is
nothing paranormal at this location.”

Returning to the restaurant for a second shot at gathering evidence of the paranormal, BCPRS members set up shop after closing time Feb. 24,
opening equipment cases around 10 p.m. Repeating portions of the original site survey conducted in December, the team took environmental and
electromagnetic readings throughout the building’s first and second floors, setting a baseline for the evening’s investigation.

After dinner and the informal trading of ghost stories in the bustling restaurant, the BCPRS crew went to work, popping open cases, unpacking
sensors, checking batteries and calibrating equipment. Along for the ride, a pair of high school students (Hayley Reagin and Tanor Rainwater, with
dad in tow) joined the group from Legacy High School, both working on senior projects reflecting something in which they have had long-term
interest. Joining the group again for this session were Other Side Investigations members Randy Schneider and Robbin Daidone.

“After watching TV, I saw ghost hunting and thought it would be very interesting, and I tried to find someone I could investigate with,” Rainwater
said.  “I found the Boulder County Paranormal Research Society and decided to come with them.”

Assistant team leader Joey Stanford opened the session with a safety briefing, then took the group on a tour of the three areas the investigation
would focus on throughout the early morning hours – the rear kitchen area, a former apartment in the basement and the coal room, now used to
store liquor and other consumables. Each location was a noted hot spot for paranormal activity in the past. Breaking into three teams, the
investigators “baselined” the targeted areas, noting EMF readings and recording temperatures. The baseline readings are critical to the
investigative process, as a key indicator in many investigations where paranormal activity is witnessed or felt, there is often a rapid, localized
change in ambient temperature, and a corresponding spike in EMF activity.

Stanford then coordinated a recap of the evidence processed since last session. BCPRS investigator Lucilla Giron replayed an EVP recorded at
the December session that appeared to respond “I would” to the investigators questioning if there were any entities present that would like to speak
to the team. Also offering up EVPs for review was Other Side member Daidone, who aired 14 recordings of interesting EVPs from the session.

Stanford asked Rickman to give a rundown of unexplained events since the December session. Rickman, saying the restaurant continued to
provide plenty of unexplained incidents, recounted employees being touched when no one was present, odd noises and unexplained emotional
swings reported by customers and employees alike. She told the group about an unofficial visit by an Ohio paranormal group, who reported seeing
and naming an apparition during their visit, which subsequently matched a picture Rickman produced when told of the incident.

The three teams then conducted a series of 20-minute investigations, lights out and equipment running, in each target area. Almost immediately,
the downstairs teams experienced interesting phenomena. Some reporting they were touched, and two team members reporting sighting a “shadow
figure” apparition crossing the basement area.

“I saw a full bodied shadow man cross through the light shaft by the stairwell to upstairs,” BCPRS Team Leader Stanford reported. “I was looking
straight on at it and exclaimed, ‘Someone please tell me you just saw that.’ Robbin (Diadone) thought it was a team member and called out but
there was nobody there.”

Next for the team is further analysis of the evidence culled throughout the early morning hours, a labor-intensive process that normally takes
weeks to fully process and evaluate. Then it’s final report time for Rickman and Wholly Stromboli, who stand better than a ghost of a chance of
heading Fort Lupton’s “Most Haunted” list.

If you dare, stop by for lunch or dinner, or perhaps a glass of spirits (of a different sort) in the bar. If you are lucky, Rickman and her staff will take
a few minutes tell you tales of the supernatural. If you are really lucky, you might walk away with one or two of your own.

Contact Wholly Stromboli, 410 Denver Avenue, at 303-857-6006.

For information on the Boulder County Paranormal Society, visit

Contact Staff Writer Gene Sears at

From the Wholly Stromboli website:

In 2007 we set out to marry old fashioned hospitality, quality, handmade food,  wine, and local micro brews in a historic environment with great atmosphere.

Three years later, with a lot of help from family and friends, Wholly Stromboli opened its doors for business in the 103 year old St. John Building.

During the renovation of the building, we preserved as much of the historic element of the building as possible and now have artifacts found during construction on display in the bar area.

...There are some who believe that this building houses the presence of past occupants who make themselves known from time to time, so keep your eyes peeled!

Holly Stromboli
410 Denver Ave.
Fort Lupton, CO 80621

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