Milwaukees Haunted Bar

422 South Second Street   -   Milwaukee, Wisconsin

(414) 272-4222


Mon - Thurs

5:00 pm - Bartime

Fri - Sun

3:00 pm - Bartime


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  • The Dematerializing Maggot Story

    It was a hot, sticky, heat wave in August in Milwaukee. We used to have a goodly number of ballerinas from the Milwaukee ballet Company work as servers and bartenders at Shakers. This was a means to augment the pittance they received as salaried performers, and their performance attitudes and lithe toned bodies were great for my business. one Tuesday night, in the summer of 1998, Ballerina Karissa Stich was working with me. It was a very good sales night for us, and as usual the crowd was captivated by the vivacious and beautiful Karissa.

    I closed the kitchen down about midnight, and sat at the east end of the front bar, at the only open barstool. I had lit up a lovely Davidoff 2000 cigar, and as was my custom, played the ash to it's longest conclusion and had a meaningful conversation with my Macallan Scotch. Having mis-judged the ash structure, I dropped the ash upon the floor. To ensure it was not a viable ember, I watched it for a moment. The life was out of it, but i did notice a white object inching across the bar floor from the vicinity of the alley door. It was a maggot.

    I grabbed the bev nap from under my scotch and picked up the maggot, depositing it in the waste container behind the bar. As I came around, I saw 3 more maggots coming from under the door. I quickly dispatched the critters, opened the door and saw a river of maggots. No, seriously; a moving, rhythmic wave of maggots, moving from East to West, looking for all the world like a river. From my building across the alleyway to the adjoining bar, nothing but maggots, fully 12 feet across, and as far east ad west as i could see. A slithering mass of maggots, and all moving as one body, undulating towards 2nd street.

    I went down to the basement storage, grabbed a case of bleach and walked out the front door, pouring out and emptying all 6 gallons, upon the buildings outer walls, this took me back towards the dumpster, which was writhing with maggots, as was the fire department's cyclone fence behind my building. I will never forget the ghastly head jarring stench of putrification which hung in the humid air. If you have ever smelled a human body decomposing, this was it. Nevertheless, I followed the maggots, slipping and sliding all the way to 1st street. Now this is the odd part...there were no maggots on the sidewalk, on 1st street, nor on 2nd street. Rather, they were all moving west from 1st to 2nd, but they never crossed the threshold of the sidewalks which ran perpendicular to the alleyway. Anyway, making my way back into Shakers, I called Karissa over to see the maggots, asking her not to scream at what I was to show her. You by now know, she screamed at what she saw.... we then decided it was time to close. It was now about 12:20, at this time in our history, we were customarily open until 2:00 am every night.

    After hurrying clients out the door with whatever flimsy story we concocted, we were about to leave at 12:30, when 2 Milwaukee police officers entered from the side doorway.

    Then Police Officer Greg Duran, whom I had known for several years was the FTO,(field training officer) that night with a brand new rookie. Duran came in looking concerned, "everything alright here, why are you closing early?" he asked, as he knew it was our custom to be open until the legal limit for closing time.

    "Did you notice anything outside, Gregg?, I asked...

    "Yeah, it stinks like a rotting dead body and there are maggots everywhere", "Well, that's why we're closing", I respond, I didn't want any customers to see these maggots crawling around Shakers, or to catch a whiff of the stench. Duran says he and his partner will investigate.
Karissa and I head home.

I'm back at 6:00 AM, unheard of for me, but I could not sleep and I'm worrying about having to call the Health Department to report these maggots as a vector problem I cannot control.

To my surprise, and relief, the alley was as clean as freshly poured cement. Not a blade of grass, cigar butt, litter, nothing. and most importantly, no maggots and No Smell.

I head home and return to work at my normal time of 4:00 PM.

Everything is normal inside as well.

I don't see Officer Duran that night, but did see Starr, one of the original psychics who had introduced me to Elizabeth years earlier.

I recounted the previous nights adventure to her and asked Starr what she thought about the maggots.

Without missing a beat, she replied that this was a good sign, and that it meant negative energy was leaving the building.

Once again, I had no logical explanation, so I deferred to hers.

Police Officer Gregg Duran is now high-profile Sergeant Duran, and would be happy to regale you with this and other tales of his unexplainable phenomena he has experienced here at Shakers.


© 1998 Robert G. Weiss/ Shakers, Inc.

Paranormal Generation - Shaker's Bar - Bob Weiss Interview

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