Is Your Fuddruckers Location Haunted?

When we think of haunted restaurants - and there are a surprising number of these – we typically envision older establishments, perhaps Prohibition-era speakeasies or 19th-century taverns that have seen darker days. Modern chain restaurants, however, seem far too bright and cheery to harbor sinister secrets, and yet a few of these, too, claim to have ectoplasmic patrons. There's "possible paranormal activity" aplenty at a Long Island Pizza Hut and a Colorado Melting Pot as well as at a spooky Subway in Wisconsin and even a haunted McDonald's in Texas. Well, add to this list a ghost-infested Fuddruckers in California.

Fuddruckers is a Texas-based hamburger chain known for its gourmet-ish burgers and an oddball name that sounds like something you'd say when you're trying not to cuss in front of the kids, but the one thing it isn't is particularly eerie. How, then, did one location come to have its own ghost? Well, like so many other haunted restaurants, the building housing the haunted Fuddruckers started off as a different establishment. Was it, then, an ancient burial ground or perhaps some notorious den of iniquity? No, according to Haunted Places, it was actually ... brace yourself ... a Blockbuster! Ooh, spooky.

The Modesto Fuddruckers was haunted by a skateboarder

So how did a video rental store-turned-chain restaurant get its own ghost? Could it be haunted by the ghosts of old Betamax cassettes? No, it seems to be the ghost of someone who met his untimely end in the pre-Blockbuster days. As the story goes, back in olden times (we're talking the 1980s here) the plot of land now designated as 3848 McHenry Avenue, Modesto, California was home to a skate park of sorts. One of the skaters is alleged to have broken his neck and died there (via Haunted Places), but his spirit remained.

As Seeks Ghosts tells it, back in Blockbuster days the spectral skater was fond of flicking the lights on and off (they teach this in Spooky Tricks 101). Allegedly, passersby witnessed these light shows. The ghost was also said to open doors, turn on battery-powered toys, and pile video boxes on the floor, incidents that employees supposedly heard. He was also heard repeating his two signature phrases: "shh ... listen" and "You've been bad." Apparently, he continued his ectoplasmic activities after the Blockbuster closed up shop and was replaced by a Fuddruckers, although there are no specific reports of just what he did at the restaurant. At the moment, however, the late skater may be resting between hauntings since Yelpers report that the Modesto Fuddruckers itself has, er, given up the ghost.