Pauls Valley Democrat
If there’s one thing which truly sets apart Halloween as a holiday from the rest is how much fun can be pulled from our own terror.
Such a prospect is the whole idea behind the Main Street Pauls Valley Living Dead Festival, an event that owes its roots to music and the undead, according to Director Samantha Robb.
What started with a flash mob dance at last year’s Boo on the Bricks event is growing into a separate Garvin County phenomena, part of which is the Zombie 5K Run.
The twist over the usual 5K is people can not only get out for a morning of good exercise, but have a choice of whether they are running from or joining a horde of flesh eating creatures, said Robb.
The day to get in on early registration, Monday, Oct. 15 is quickly approaching for those age 14 and older with a cost of $30 to run as a human and a fee of $15 for the brain munchers.
“The initial idea is the runners run and the zombies chase them,” said Robb, noting how the first 100 who register get a free T-shirt. “If you have some fun and interesting things people will want to stay longer.”
It basically kicks off the festival at 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 27 where people will gather downtown and see who can make it to the end of a course taking them through some residential neighborhoods, the town’s Nature Trail on Walnut Street and back, said Robb.
However, making it particularly interesting will be the variety of zombies waiting for victims; from runner zombies who will chase their target to creeping zombies who shuffle around waiting for the distracted and zombie mobs blocking the way of runners at random locations.
The goal is certainly to try and finish the race first, but also making things a bit more difficult is the fact all runners will have black flags tied to them representing their arms and legs, said Robb.
The zombies will be after these flags, so losing them will impact one’s chances to win the trophy for ultimate survivor.
This means first place will be considered partly by the best time, but also by the person with the most flags left, said Robb.
Some of the rules to keep it balanced state there will be no physical contact between the runners and zombies other than the act of stealing a flag, said Robb.
Zombies also can only steal one flag from a runner with the mentality of safety first.
“First place is great, but if you can be first place and the ultimate survivor, that is awesome,” said Robb, adding how one can get a limb back if they find a hidden purple flag and the best strategy might include losing a little time to preserve limbs.
“So we won’t know who our ultimate survivor is until it is all over.”
The rest of the days events include a Zombie Walk for Cystic Fibrosis at 10 a.m., the Pauls Valley Arts Council Monster Art and Glow Show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the downtown Arts and Cultural Center, coffin cruise soap box races at 1 p.m., an undead fashion show at the arts center at 6 p.m., a Monsters Ball and Zombie Prom at 8 p.m. and an interactive showing of the Rocky Horror Picture show at midnight (seating limited with tickets for sale).
There is a $10 late registration fee for those who register for the 5K after Oct. 15. For more information contact Robb at 405-238-2555 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.