Lily Dale: Connecting

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Lily Dale: Connecting

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Blue Moon. Dead Before Dark. In years past, they had come to learn, but this year they were serving for the first time in the healing temple — hands-on healing on a first-come-first-served basis. Caveat emptor, suggested John White, 72, a medium, mystic and medical intuitive, for the American Medical Association has not blessed these practices.

Lestock, 71, is a physical medium, which means she has a skill set that includes spoon bending and table turning. As it is for many of the mediums practicing here, Lily Dale is Ms. Lestock emigrated to Ohio in the late s, part of a mass Jewish exodus from Poland, where she grew up, to escape anti-Semitic government policies. She has been a furrier, a marketing executive and a boxing coach.

Lestock, who moved here full time in In the 19th century, Western and Central New York were such hotbeds of social revolution, free thought, dubious science and new religions that they were known as the Burned-Over District. There were abolitionists, suffragists and utopians. There were Shakers, if not movers. Joseph Smith was seeing angels; William Avery Rockefeller father of the founders of Standard Oil was hawking quack nostrums; and the Fox sisters, a trio of teenagers living in Hydesville, were receiving messages from a dead tin peddler.

Yet they are stars in Lily Dale. Their cottage was moved here in , and its site it burned to the ground at midcentury is now the Fox Memorial Garden, still a favorite spot for Spiritualist pilgrims and tourists of the paranormal. Gorgeously tattooed and a with a spray of pale blue hair, Ms. Shepp, 32, is the first professional director the library has had in decades. She was hired in , after having been digital director of the Skeptiseum , an intoxicating virtual museum of fringe science and far-out religion curated by Joe Nickell , a paranormal skeptic.

About the Series

Shepp has brought some order to the roughly 12, volumes here. Often described as a "summer camp for psychics", Lily Dale is home to the largest community of Spiritualists in the world. If you've never heard of Spiritualism before, that's understandable its heyday was in the late s , but the basic gist of the belief is that no one truly disappears when they die, they just change forms. As such, the dead can be summoned at will for advice, comfort, or even just as a fun party trick.

Today, Spiritualism may not be popular, but its few believers are still drawn together in tiny, tight-knit communties.

Finally after Spiritualism came under fire from skeptics in the s, they adopted the name Lily Dale. Despite the name changes, the purpose of the town has always remained the same: to commune with the dead.

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In the strange town of Lily Dale, the living reside happily among the dead | Roadtrippers

Via Week In Weird :. Every year, the quirkly little town sees nearly 22, people from all over the world, most of them eager to connect with the loved ones they've lost. Each day, numerous services occur in places like the Forest Temple, the Healing Temple, or the Inspiration Stump, during which one of the community's numerous psychics will deliver messages from the dead.

The residents take their beliefs seriously. So seriously, in fact, that you need to prove your skills as a medium just to join the Lily Dale Assembly. And unlike most who offer personal connections with the deceased, the Assembly offers refunds to clients who don't believe they've gotten a fair reading.

Life at Lily Dale