BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) – Bakersfield is in the national spotlight as the Discovery + series “Portals to Hell” explores the strange events surrounding the Padre Hotel. The series on the streaming service, hosted by paranormal investigators Jack Osbourne and Katrina Weidman, included stopovers in the United States at locations historically haunted.
For decades, stories have been circulating about mysterious figures walking through the building’s halls downtown, strange noises at night, and a strange image in the lobby that looks like a handprint left by a little girl. That was enough to get the hotel on the show’s radar.
Ordinarily, the Padre Hotel would be too busy to accommodate a crew of 14 trying to roam the building and set up cameras to capture supernatural activity. In December there was an opening for such an examination by the “Portals of Hell” team due to the slowdown caused by the pandemic.
Osbourne will set the tone for the show as soon as he and fellow investigator Heather Taddy (who is standing in for co-host Katrina Weidman for this investigation) arrive at the hotel.
“It looks like the cover of a horror movie poster,” says Osbourne. “It reminds me of ‘The Shining’.”
Your three day investigation begins with a tour of the building led by Jennifer Johnson, the hotel manager. Johnson tells stories from guests and staff of a strange and inexplicable nature. Several employees discuss with Osbourne and his team the strange things they have seen and heard over the years.
The first day ends with Osbourne checking into a room on the eighth floor and Taddy one floor below. Guests staying in the room on the seventh floor have reported that furniture in the room Osbourne lives in was moved when there were no guests.
After a restless night in Osbourne, the team begins its work, which includes extensive research, a range of scientific equipment and specialists, which in the case of the Padre Hotel includes clairvoyant Sarah Lemos.
Research into the hotel reveals a dark past since it opened in 1928 that includes at least two suicides that occurred in 1977. One was a woman throwing herself off the top of the building and the other was a man who shot himself while in a bathtub.
Lemos pulls to multiple locations in the hotel but admits to being nervous about visiting the rooftop. Your fear is caused by hearing the word “jump” or “poke”.
After Lemos leaves, the team begins the investigation, which involves installing cameras throughout the building. Both Osbourne and Taddy take turns visiting areas of the hotel. What they discover over the next two days will make up the final act of the program.
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It would spoil all surprises to reveal what goes on during this period except to point out that Osbourne describes his time at the Padre Hotel as “a great investigation.”
How awesome viewers will find this journey through the Bakersfield landmark entirely depends on their perspective when it comes to the supernatural. Those who believe things go wrong during the night will be more in line with the investigation.
If you’re an unbeliever, the episode – and indeed the entire series – can be dismissed like so many programs delving into the world of the supernatural. It can all be explained as a power of suggestion, a natural phenomenon or a little Hollywood trick.
In any case, the program is a very positive advertisement for the Padre Hotel. Those interested in the supernatural have been shown a fascinating lure into a world with some strange possibilities. The handprint in the lobby is really enough to arouse interest in a visit.
Those who consider all of this a bunk get an in-depth look at how lovely a stay at the Padre can be. Anyone who has lived in this city long enough to know it before the renovations can testify that the current priest represents a massive improvement over the past.
In any case, the visit of the team from “Portals to Hell” should put the Padre Hotel in an uproar.
“Portals to Hell” is now streamed on Discovery +.