You may not see it, at least not at first glance, but it's there. In every episode of Kindred Spirits, the Travel Channel show in which paranormal investigators Amy Bruni and Adam Berry visit haunted locations to help bring peace and closure to the living and the dead, there's a presence looming.
I'm not talking about ghosts. I'm talking about ghost bread.
The loaf — a fake French baguette — is snuck into every episode of Kindred Spirits, and has been for the past four seasons. (The show is currently filming its seventh.) It's become so popular with fans that @officialghostbread even has its own Instagram account. "Follow my crumbs," its profile reads.
"Honestly, people watch the episode multiple times just to find the ghost bread," Berry tells Yahoo Life. "It's more popular than we are."
"It's on tour with me right now," Bruni adds. "People take photos with it."
When we speak, it's the middle of spooky season, which means it's the busiest time of the year for the ghost-hunting duo. Bruni is in on a speaking tour promoting her book, Life with the Afterlife: 13 Truths I Learned about Ghosts, and Berry is on day two of a paranormal investigating weekend he's hosting in Provincetown, Mass., where he lives.
The legend of ghost bread goes like this. Bruni and Berry were filming an episode of Kindred at Maplecroft, the home in Fall River, Mass. where Lizzie Borden lived out her days after she was acquitted of murdering her father and stepmother. "It's near my house, so in the evening I would have the babysitter bring my daughter to work so that I could see her," Bruni says. But one day, the sitter arrived early.
"We were still doing interviews, so we needed Charlotte to be quiet," she says. "Our producer grabbed a loaf of prop bread that was on display in the house, and he handed it to 4-year-old Charlotte and said, 'This is ghost bread, ghosts love ghost bread.'" The next thing they knew, they were hearing the little girl upstairs trying to engage the spirits by saying Ghooooosts, I have ghooooost breeeead.
"She left the bread upstairs somewhere, and our other producer Sean snuck up the stairs and took the ghost bread," Bruni says. "We sent Charlotte upstairs and the ghost bread was gone." The little girl was convinced the bread had been eaten by spirits. "She was like, The ghosts took the ghost bread! So starting with that episode, we put the ghost bread in a shot. After that, every episode, we put the ghost bread somewhere as an Easter egg."
It's an absolute fan-favorite, and has become something that people look for in every episode. "It started as a joke," she adds, "until people really started noticing it."
"We're fine with it," Berry says. "We're going to put the ghost bread somewhere in the background inconspicuously, and you know, people are going to search for it over and over again."
They might not actually eat ghost bread, but Bruni and Berry have shared some spooky meals together. Many of the cases they investigate are at restaurants where unexplained things happen and people are having unsettling experiences. At Twisted Vine Restaurant, in a former bank building in Derby, Conn., Berry says, "they were having the craziest activity in their bar downstairs."
"The jukebox would turn on by itself, glasses would slide across the counter and they would see shadow figures downstairs," he says. "In the main restaurant, they would hear a male voice calling down to someone who worked there." The owners wanted them to figure out what was happening, not just for the sake of the staff, but for the customers, too.
"The spirit, we figured out, was a bank clerk named Samuel Lessey," Berry says. A customer had passed a forged check by changing $25 to $2500 (about $75,000 today) and Lessey had let it through."
"He felt so guilty about it that he committed the act of suicide in the nearby cemetery, by laying down in a coffin and shooting himself," he explains. "It was him in that space still sort of trying to make amends and be in charge."
Another remarkable haunting they investigated was at The Valley Inn, a restaurant in Portsmouth, R.I. "They'd been experiencing activity for years," Bruni says, "but the owner was never really into the whole ghost thing. But then with COVID, they were basically closed, so they allowed us to come in and investigate."
The restaurant is built on the exact site of a 17th century farm once owned by the Cornell family. In 1673, Rebecca Cornell died from severe burns, and according to court testimony, she visited her brother in the night days after her death, saying, "See how they burned me?" referring to her son, Thomas. "It's the only place in the history of America where someone was put to death based on the testimony of a ghost," Bruni says.
In the restaurant, staff once saw a bottle fly off the wall, and a woman saw an apparition of a woman holding a baby in the dining room. Since the episode of Kindred aired, para-curious people now visit in the hopes of seeing something strange. "We go there all the time," Bruni says. "It's a really cool piece of history in Portsmouth and it's close to my house. People go there just to see it and to hear the ghost stories."
They've shared meals in spooky places across the country — but both Bruni and Berry agree that one of the most memorable was in Harrisville, R.I., at the former home of the Perron family whose paranormal experiences inspired The Conjuring.
The pair investigated the "Conjuring house," but brought back members of the family for the episode: the father, Roger Perron, and four daughters, Andrea, Nancy, Christine and Cindy. On a break from shooting in the notoriously haunted house, they all had dinner together in the home's dining room. It happened to be on Roger's birthday.
"We had cupcakes for him," Bruni says. "He got to celebrate one last birthday in that house. Obviously the house was very haunted and some of the times they had there were rough, but they talked so fondly of holiday memories. It kind of felt like we were like right back to when they lived there, and we were celebrating a holiday with them."
"It was really special and the opposite of what you would imagine feeling in that place," she adds, "because people are always so scared to go there."
"Never in my wildest dreams would I think I'd be in that house sitting with the actual Perron family having this celebratory moment," Berry says. "We both had to just step back for a minute and be like This is once in a lifetime and this is something that is going to go down in history for us as an incredible experience."
(Editor's Note: Julie Tremaine, the author of this article, also helped write Amy Bruni's book.)
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