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Local Witches Cast Their Opinions of 'The Blair Witch Project'

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RALEIGH — Witches usually don't get a lot of attention until Halloween. However, this summer, witches are in, thanks to the low-budget silver screen screamer "The Blair Witch Project."

The movie officially opened Friday, but you do not have to go to the movies to learn more about witches. There are plenty of local legends about witches right here in North Carolina, and there are plenty of people who practice witchcraft. But unlike the movie, they say it is not about evil, it's about spiritual harmony.

Steve Stone has not see "The Blair Witch Project" yet. Although he plans to see it, he hopes it will not give people the wrong idea about witchcraft.

"People have to understand that witchcraft is not devil worship," he said.

Stone has a store in Raleigh calledThe Cosmic Lemniscate, which sells items related to the occult. He has pentagrams, crystal balls, tarot cards and even broomsticks.

"The lady that makes them calls them cobweb catchers," Stone said.

"Frightening movies don't do us a lot of good," says Diana Rice, who is a witch. She is also concerned that the hype surrounding the movie could give people the wrong idea.

"We don't curse, we might swear, but we don't lay curses on people," Rice said. "It's just not something we do."

At the Rialto Theater in Raleigh, ticket sales for the new picture are brisk. The matinee gave theatergoers a chance to get out of the heat and see what all the talk was about.

"I knew kind of what it was about before I saw it, but still, I was very impressed with it," says moviegoer Victor Mangum.

"There were a couple minutes where I was like, 'I'm never going camping again,' but it wasn't as scary as I thought it would be," says moviegoer Geoff Gann.

There are several theaters in the Triangle showing "The Blair Witch Project."

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Amanda Lamb, Reporter
Adrienne Traxinger, Photographer
Jason Darwin, Web Editor

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