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Oak Harbor crawls onto the zombie bandwagon

Jaclynn Karels, left, and Chris Phillips (in sling) didn’t hold back in dressing up as the undead during a zombie parade down one lane of Midway Boulevard in Oak Harbor Saturday night. - Ron Newberry/Whidbey News-Times
Jaclynn Karels, left, and Chris Phillips (in sling) didn’t hold back in dressing up as the undead during a zombie parade down one lane of Midway Boulevard in Oak Harbor Saturday night.
— image credit: Ron Newberry/Whidbey News-Times

The culture behind zombies is something Pam Karels said her family follows. From the old school zombie movies, to the hit AMC television series “The Walking Dead" on AMC, they love everything.

“The Night of the Living Dead, the Walking Dead, dead, dead, dead,” Jaclynn Karels said.

The Karels’ and Chris Phillips did not break character during this past weekend’s Zombie Crawl in Oak Harbor. They slunk their way down Midway Boulevard with rest of the pack, groaning and advancing on living bystanders, just like the extras you’d see on a horror movie set.

Most attendees credited their appreciation of zombies to “The Walking Dead.” Elizabeth Rodriguez said her entire family gathers to watch each new episode.

The show is in its fourth season and follows small-town sheriff Rick Grimes through the zombie apocalypse. The show has grown in popularity over the years, with more than 16.1 million people watching the season premiere this year, according to TV.com.

Inside the Whidbey Playhouse, playhouse board member Allenda Jenkins said children were excited to get their faces painted, and some of the older kids were talking about the zombie apcolyspe.

The response from the community was great, Jenkins said. Everyone said they loved how different the event was, and that it was something the whole family could participate in.

Next year more volunteers are needed to keep up with the zombie enthusiasts. Jenkins said she had planned on relieving Unsize Me owner Carol Sele, who was teaching the zombie dance classes, but she never got a break.

“She danced the whole time,” Jenkins said. With four volunteers applying makeup and others helping zombies into costumes, everyone was busy during the zombie takeover.

Theater volunteers also helped out before the event. Julia Locke prepared the T-shirts donated from WAIF so they were ready for the zombies. She tore them up and “bloodied” them for costumes.

The theater needs to stock more zombie colors for next year, Jenkins said. With more makeup artists and green and purple face paint, even more people will be infected.

 

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