Colorful and spooky history await you this weekend in Jerome as the central Arizona town gears up for its 14th annual Ghost Walk.
Steve Pontious, coordinator of the Ghost Walk and the board secretary of the Jerome Historical Society, the non-profit organization that presents the event, said the Ghost Walk will allow people to walk through intriguing, re-enacted events from the town’s past.
“This year we’re depicting some things that took place between 1891 and 1921,” Pontious said, adding that the Ghost Walk allows people to get a feel for what Jerome was once like.
“Part of the Historical Society’s mission is to preserve our history and to educate. Every year the show is different and so is the cast,” he said.
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This year’s show, which runs approximately one hour, includes nine separate scenes covering seven different locations.
“For safety purposes the actual walking is kept to a certain route and I’d guesstimate overall it is about 1/5 of a mile all told with some stone steps involved,” Pontious said.
About 35 amateur actors from Jerome as well as Clarkdale, Cottonwood, Sedona and Camp Verde all take part in the show, including several children.
“We keep the performances loose and flexible so we can interact with the audience when the opportunity presents itself,” Pontious said.
“Our thought is that if we’re having a good time putting this show on then hopefully the audience will have just as good a time watching it.”
The Ghost Walk is a PG-13 type of show with some gunfire —“you can’t be a ghost if you ain’t dead,” Ponticus said. From different walks of life, the people putting on the show get together once a year to dress up and put on the best show they can.
“We can also be a bit bawdy — Soiled Doves, otherwise known as prostitutes, make that a necessity — but without going too far. As I often tell the cast, we’re not doing Shakespeare,” Pontious said.
While Pontious does not want to give away too much about the Ghost Walk, he said the Madam Pearl Brothel scene that starts the show features a surprise.
“And the final scene where we re-create the atmosphere of the Fashion Saloon within the remnants of the old historic Bartlett Hotel should be fun due to its physical location and the action we have planned,” he said.
14th annual Jerome Ghost Walk
When: Shows start every half hour between 6:30-9 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Oct. 13-14.
Where: Starts at Spook Hall, 260 Hull Ave., Jerome
Admission: $15 on Friday, $20 on Saturday, free for age 10 and under. Reservations are highly recommended.
Details: 928-634-1066 or visit jeromehistoricalsociety.com.
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