Tour Guide Bio’s

Ron Roope:

Ronne Roope (‘Romantic Ron’), the founder of Tours of Jerome, worked as the Historian for the town of Jerome, Arizona while acting as the Archivist for the Jerome Historical Society. He has lived over 30 years in both Sedona and Cottonwood. Observing the millions of guests to Jerome who would stroll the historic streets and visit the unique shops and restaurants of Jerome, he realized that many of the many of them left without learning the great historic relevance of Jerome to the entire Verde Valley. That’s when he decided to begin the original, historic tour company that would bring people from Sedona to Jerome while narrating the rich history of the area.

Ron

On the tour, guides would tell numerous historically accurate stories of murders, suicides, and bank robberies that took place in this town once known as the “Wickedest Town in the West”. Many guests suggested a haunted tour be added. And since Jerome was a ‘Ghost Town’ for many years, ‘Haunted’ tours were added to the menu. Later, after the new Owners took over, Wine Tours of the many tasting rooms in the Verde Valley were also added and Ron enjoys conducting these tours also. Wine tours might even be his favorite.

In his past, Ron attended the International Tour Management Institute in San Francisco. He also was a professional dancer and actor in numerous musical theater productions while working in Southern California. He also currently teaches public speaking at Yavapai College in Clarkdale.
Ron is one of our Guides now for Tours of Jerome and we are lucky to have him!


Ken Mikell:

Ken has lived and worked in the Verde Valley since 1978.
He is a potter, a poet, a musician and has served as a local guide and instructor for Yavapai College Elderhostel programs and for the University of Northern Arizona Road Scholar programs for several decades before coming to Tours of Jerome. As a storyteller and a folk musician he has visited schools all over the state for the Arizona Commission for the Arts. He was the ‘Ghost’ Actor, did the voice over and the background music for the educational video created for the Douglas Mansion in Jerome in 1989, and when the museum decided to redo the video in HD in 2012, he was asked to do it again.

Ken

“The Verde Valley is a microcosm of the history of the west. It is all here. Ancient Native civilizations. Spanish explorers, pioneer settlers, Cavalry outposts, Indian wars, cattle ranches, nesters, robber barons, railroads, boom-to-bust mining towns, outlaws, and the steady advance of law and order, and now folks from all over come to visit one of the most beautiful and unique places in the world. Sedona, the Verde Valley, and Jerome, the billion dollar copper camp. It is a real pleasure to be able to share my love and knowledge of the area with our guests.”
We feel honored to work with Ken!


Jane Goddard:

Jane comes from one of the original pioneer families that settled in the Verde Valley in 1892, so she has always had a special passion for the history of Arizona. Jane spent many a day in Jerome during the 70’s and 80’s, hanging out with the fellow ‘Hippies’ at the old abandoned hospital, now the haunted Jerome Grand Hotel. Jane
‘My grandparents sold produce from their farm in Camp Verde during Jerome’s early days; my father and uncle owned large ranches in the copper smelter town of Clarkdale that served the mines of Jerome in the 1930’s and 40’s. My Dad even ran for political office! I believe that it is likely that some of the ghosts in Jerome either knew my family, or were at least familiar with the Goddard family name. I am not sure if this is why I seem to attract the spirits in Jerome, or if it has something to do with my near-death experience 14 years ago. But every month the energy seems to become more intense, and I look forward to seeing what kind of orbs, ectoplasm or apparitions that I will capture in my photos whenever I do tours.
I feel it is important to be passive observer in supernatural encounters.
I do not believe in provoking the spirits, because I view them as my co-workers, and many deserve respect. I don’t consider myself a true clairvoyant, but I am a sensitive. Many of my ideas and theories regarding the supernatural are a result of my study of Anthropology, and deriving various methods and beliefs from ancient cultures, and primitive or traditional societies.’
Jane thoroughly enjoys working both the Historic and Haunted Tours for Tours of Jerome and we are lucky to have her!