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CREEPY: Why Do People Visit the Clown Motel in Nevada?

Coulrophobia is a fear of clowns. Experts estimate that 1 in 10 adults have this fear. While clowns want to spread cheer, some people find them downright creepy.

So what could be worse than a single clown? How about an entire motel dedicated to them?

The Clown Motel can be as scary as it sounds and attracts visitors from all over the world. Let’s see if it’s worth all the commotion! 

Where Is the Clown Motel?

The Clown Motel is in the southwest corner of Nevada, in Tonopah. It’s along Highway 6 and next to several other popular attractions. While many may pass through this town on their way to or from Vegas and Reno, those who choose to stop are in for quite the circus!

How Did the Clown Motel Come Into Being?

Clarence David was a resident of Tonopah with a clown collection. He died in the Belmont Fire of 1942 and was buried in the Tonopah Cemetery. Clarence’s children, Leon and Leroy, opened a motel next to the cemetery. They had the idea to display all 150 of their dad’s clowns. Guests loved it.

Eventually, Leon and Leroy sold the motel, and Bob and Deborah Perchetti purchased it. They enjoyed hosting guests at their quirky location. Zak Bagans brought a film crew to film an episode of “Ghost Adventures” there. The show captured what they believed were several occurrences of paranormal activity. Once the show aired, guests from all over the world started flocking to stay in the motel.

Currently, the Mehar family owns the property. They’ve invested a lot of time and effort into upgrading the motel and making it a place that is as comfortable to stay in as it is unique. If you’re passing through the area, you might consider booking a room!

Clown Motel welcome sign
Spend the night surrounded by 3,000 clowns at the Clown Motel.

How Many Clowns Are in the Clown Motel?

While the clown collection started as 150 clowns, it has undoubtedly grown. Currently, there are over 3,000 clowns. If you enjoy clowns, this might be the happiest place on earth for you. However, if you’re not a fan of clowns, you’ll likely be leaving a  1-star review for this unique roadside motel.

Why Do People Stay at the Clown Motel?

You may be wondering what would inspire people to stay at such a motel. There are a handful of reasons why it’s worth the stay. Let’s see!

Reported Paranormal Activity

There are reports of guests seeing a dark silhouette, hearing voices, and seeing objects move independently. Guests interested in paranormal activity like to stay at this motel in the hopes of seeing and experiencing ghostly activity for themselves. 

Pro Tip: On the hunt for a haunt? Check out these 13 Best Paranormal Places for Your Next Road Trip.

Incredibly Unique Experience

Staying in a hotel with over 3,000 clowns is about as unique of an experience as you can get. It’s a quirky stop that can provide a fun experience and an exciting story to share with friends and family.

Some People Actually Like Clowns

Believe it or not, not everybody hates clowns. Some people like them. These individuals don’t find them to be creepy or scary as others. Seeing a large number of clowns may even bring them joy and amusement. 

It’s TV Famous

One of the most prominent reasons people visit this location is that it’s TV famous. It has been on shows highlighting paranormal activity, multiple movies, and even a comic book. Getting to experience something that people see on television can be exciting. The number of visitors skyrocketed after the first show aired.

Clown dolls
Search for spooks at the allegedly haunted Clown Motel.

Can You Buy Clown Souvenirs at the Clown Motel?

Yes, The Clown Motel has an extensive shop for souvenirs. You can even shop online. You’ll find t-shirts, shot glasses, and magnets. They have just about any product you could want with their logo on it! Order $100 or more online, and you can even get free shipping!

Things to Do While Staying at the Clown Motel

If you’re calling The Clown Motel home for a night or two, there are a handful of activities to do in the area. Here are some things you might want to make sure you do before leaving town. 

Visit the Old Tonopah Cemetery

The Tonopah Cemetery sits right next to the Clown Motel. It can be a fascinating experience to walk through an old cemetery and read the names on the tombstones. There are over 300 graves in the Tonopah Cemetery. You can pick up a historical map that will give you more information about the cemetery and the people buried there.

Enjoy One Of the Darkest Nighttime Skies in the US

If you enjoy stargazing, Tonopah is a great place to do it! With minimal light pollution, it might be one of the darkest skies you’ll ever experience. You may get lucky and see a shooting star or two while you enjoy the nighttime sky.

Pro Tip: We found the 7 Best Stargazing Spots in the USA for your next nighttime adventure.

Tonopah Historic Mining Park

This old mining area is now a museum and historical site. The 113-acre area was once home to four major mining companies, and you can learn all about them in the museum. There’s a self-guided tour where you can explore what life was like for those working in the mines.

An Eclectic Location for a Unique Visit

The Clown Motel isn’t for everyone. If you’re not a fan of clowns, it’s likely not the type of place you’ll want to stay. However, if you enjoy a quirky place to stay in a small town, it doesn’t get much better than this! You may hit the jackpot and have a paranormal guest join you during your stay!

Would you visit the Clown Motel? Tell us in the comments!

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  1. Sigrid says:

    I saw it driving through Tonopah. Just on the outside, wouldn’t want to stay there. It’s actually a pretty boring little town.