Jerome, Arizona, is a spooky place to be in October.The famous ghost town goes all out for Halloween. Two major crowd-pleasers are the midmonth Ghost Walk and a Halloween Dance Party in Spook Hall (the town’s nickname for Lawrence Memorial Hall).
The Jerome Historical Society stages the Ghost Walk with its retelling of eerie events that actually took place in Jerome.Actors in period costume dramatize shootouts, drownings, murders and séances—some spine-chilling; others merely creepy or supernatural.The town has such a colorful history, with so many ghostly tales, that no two years are alike.
There are three guided “Spirit Walks:” at 5 p.m., 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.Each time slot can accommodate up to 200 people, who tour historic buildings in groups of 40 to 50 and listen to the ghost stories.The event begins at Spook Hall (260 Hull Avenue), where musicians set the mood.
Tickets are between $6 and $12, depending on age and if purchased in advance from the Jerome Historical Society (928) 634-1066. No fee for children up to age 6.
While the Ghost Walk is on the streets of Jerome, the Halloween Dance Party takes place primarily in Spook Hall. For more than three decades, the costume ball has been a fundraiser for the town’s fire department.“It’s quite an event,” says fire chief Terry Molloy, “the whole town has taken it up; even the bars are decorated, and people book rooms six to 12 months in advance.”
The Halloween Dance Party begins at 9 p.m. and ends at 2 a.m.It includes a full cash bar and a costume contest with different categories that vary from year to year. Jerome businesses donate prizes for the winners, including dinners, overnights and gift certificates. “The whole town celebrates.It’s a very spooky night. Everybody has a great time,” says Molloy. Tickets are $10 at the door.