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This April, the doomed spirits and diabolical spectres responsible for Masters of Brewtality present the second of our ongoing three-month study on the most haunted bars here in Flagstaff. We’ve always loved the Monte Vista, whose blood red neon sign beckons all with promises of delicious drink, rockin’ music and a right decent staff, but what has always stuck out is the fact that this may be the most haunted spot in the city. There are 10 regularly sighted apparitions, in addition to multiple “hotspots” for paranormal activity and all are verified by staff, patrons and random quacks alike! 

We here at Masters of Brewtality even once personally witnessed an otherworldly event in the bathroom of the V around 2005. After posting up at the bar around noon, we had three or four beers to bounce back from the previous night’s festivities and start things off in the best way. Now, as anyone who knows will tell, three or four beers in those days was often breakfast and by no means invalidated perspective, but we digress... The pipes at the time were notorious for leaking, leaving the old bathroom with an inch or so of water on the floor. The stalls had rich purple curtains--reminiscent of the ones Poe spoke of in The Raven--providing privacy. The door opened behind, the sound of footsteps sloshed into the stall next door, and the curtain shut. Then came a long eerie silence. Long enough to finish all personal business. Long enough to flush, long enough to wash hands. Still, silence. “You okay in there”? Nothing. “Hello?” No sounds. “Okay, I’m going to check on you,” was said before the curtain was pulled back revealing a totally empty stall. Someone had walked in and literally disappeared. Shaken, we returned to the bar and told the bartender who laughed and said he hears that story at least once a month. 

Now, before you start creeping around the bathrooms at the Monte Vista, it’s generally acknowledged that activity stopped right after the remodel, so don’t bother. Visitors and guests still looking for a spooky thrill have had the best luck with rooms 220, 305 and 306. Room 220 holds the spirit of “The Meatman,” an eccentric long-term resident who hung meat from his chandelier and was found in a grisly state three days after his death. People who stay in his room report TVs turning on and off by their own accord, cold hands touching them in the dead of night and doors locking by themselves. Room 306 belongs to two illustrious “Ladies of the Evening.” During the early years of Flagstaff, the south side of the tracks was a booming red light district and, in 1940, two unfortunate workers were taken to that very room, murdered and cruelly hurled onto the street below. Over the years since, patrons have reported feeling like they’re being watched or hearing whispers, and males frequently report being suffocated and choked in the dead of night. Depending on perspective, this could be a deal considering that service usually comes with an upcharge. 

Room 305 is, hands down, the most haunted out of all of them--the infamous rocking chair has been even featured on Unsolved Mysteries. Guests frequently sight an elderly woman sitting in front of the window and there’s speculation she’s the same long-term renter who lived there years ago. Stories of strange sounds emanating from the closet and her chair rocking by itself abound. Manager Jenn Vargas recommends hitting YouTube and checking out the video a family recently shot after spending the night playing with a Ouji board. Sometimes people truly get more than they bargain for! 

Naturally, the charms of the Monte Vista don’t start or stop with the ghosts. Even the air hangs with an aura of elegant history that is every bit as intoxicating as anything you’d find in a bottle and, above all, it’s the kind of place where you’ll run into both locals and travelers alike. As we here at Masters of Brewtality are craft beer fanatics, we wholeheartedly endorse both lounge and Rendezvous as perfect spots to spend a morning, afternoon and night enjoying some high end suds. The downstairs lounge offers Mother Road’s Tower Station and Wanderlust’s Pan Am Stout for the local fans and recently switched their cheapie draft beer to Rolling Rock. Rendezvous also offers a wide, rotating selection and their deal of $3 craft pints on Tappie Tuesdays is one of the best deals in town. Next month, we’ll be wrapping up this miniseries with the Weatherford! Cheers!

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