Parkland, Champaign Park District host “Zombie Run!”
Published: Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 23, 2012 18:10
It was a cold October afternoon. Night fell on the city of Champaign. The zombie apocalypse was upon us.
Evacuation began at 4 p.m. on the campus of Parkland College. Survivors had to run through a severely zombie infected area in order to reach the only safe zone in the world.
Not many were able to escape with their lives but the ones who did succeed are able to call themselves zombie apocalypse survivors.
This year’s “Zombie Run!” event proved to be a huge success. The masterminds at Champaign Park District hit a homerun with this event.
More than 100 runners eagerly awaited the start of the run. As the minutes ticked down, many of the participants were showing a bit of nervousness and excitement.
This event was well advertised. Signs promoting the event were put up throughout Parkland’s campus and the event was featured in the booklet that Park District mails out to city households.
Champaign Park District was able to get many sponsors for the event, including Parkland College.
Jonathan Richards is a Digital Media major. He decided to participate after hearing about the event through an advertisement at Parkland. He finished the race infected.
“I had so much fun running through the different stations. My heart was pounding throughout the whole run,” Richards said.
“You didn’t really know what to expect, the whole race was just an entire mystery, you didn’t know what was going to happen next,” he expressed.
“My favorite station was the car accident station,” Richards remarked. “Even though I finished the race infected, I had a blast.”
“I just can’t wait to see with what they come up with next year,” he said. “This is something that I will look forward to every October.”
The majority of runners finished the race infected. The way it was determined whether the runners were infected was by whether they had all of their flags removed.
Each runner started the race with three flag-football flags attached to a flag belt. Those with any remaining at the end survived. Those who lost their flags were deemed to be infected.
For those who finished with one flag you were considered an unlucky survivor because you would soon transform into a zombie.
The race was really tough due to the fact that there were many zombies on the course who were trying to chase down the runners.
Adrienne Robinson is a Marketing Major and finished the race as a survivor.
“The adrenaline rush was amazing, I haven’t had this much fun in a race ever,” Robinson remarked. “My strategy was to just run for my life as soon as I heard the zombies.”
“I think I had my eyes closed the whole time, my heart was about to explode out of my chest,” she remarked. “It was filled with thrills and I earned some bragging rights among my friends.”
Many people registered to be a zombie. Those who did described it as a fun and thrilling experience.
One of the zombies on the course was Parkland President Thomas Ramage. He was in charge of chasing down runners and taking their flags.
Many students were unaware that President Ramage was one of the zombies who were chasing them down.
Derrick Roy, Web Programmer major, was surprised that President Ramage was a zombie and finished the race infected.
“I had no idea he was on the course, I was too busy running for my life and yelling at the top of my lunges,” Roy stated.
“My favorite part was running through the woods,” Roy said. “That’s where I lost my flags, the whole environment of the race was truly amazing.”
“I was really happy that I registered early for this race because I know that some people were unable to register,” he said. “I will definitely be registering early for next year’s race.”
After the race, runners were able to purchase food and refreshments.
The “Zombie Run!” will be a yearly event. Make sure to sign up early in order for you to have a guaranteed spot in next year.
Champaign Park District is already excited for next year’s event, and they should. The “Zombie Run!” was a huge success. It has potential to become the Park District’s most popular race.
Another upcoming event hosted by Champaign Park District is “Polar Paws,” which is a 5K run or a 10K walk with your dog on December 1.
Overall, the “Zombie Run!” was a big hit among the hundreds of runners and volunteers. Many described it as the best race they’ve ever participated in.
Who knows, maybe next year you will be one of the lucky survivors.