Afternoon of the living dead [UPDATED]Published 6:00am Sunday, October 3, 2010 Updated 1:10pm Saturday, October 2, 2010
The old mill behind Service Food was the scariest place in town at 5 p.m. Friday, as about 50 garishly dressed and gorily made up young people lumbered about in preparation for the Second Annual Fergus Falls Zombie Crawl. Rotting flesh had been drawn on with gray markers and paint, old clothing had been ripped with reckless abandon, and fake blood flowed (and coagulated) freely.
Sam Facio, one of the organizers of the event, estimated that there were between 30 and 40 people at last year’s zombie crawl, and she was happy that the event had grown.
“We just wanted to do something fun in Fergus Falls that everyone could be involved with,” she said.
Though Sam certainly helped, the event is the brainchild of Dominic Facio, her brother. He got the idea from zombie pub crawls held in bigger cities like Minneapolis and Fargo.
Though Dominic’s primary goal was to give young adults something fun to do in town, it’s also become something of a practice session for him. Dominic wants to become a special effects makeup artist, and he designed and painted the faces of eight of the most disgusting zombies – including his own.
“Mine took three hours,” he said.
It showed. His face was masked in a pallid gray, with sores and leaves caked around the mouth. His hair was matted and held streaks of silver, and his nose and forehead were speckled with moss and a large plastic spider.
This year, the crawl had a larger itinerary. After the group trudged eerily around town, they went to The Spot to dance to electronic and industrial music.
“It looks really professional inside The Spot,” Sam said, adding that she was happy with all of the different artists they got to play there.
Lest one think that zombies are all about moaning and feasting on the living, Dominic said that they’re about helping the community, too. Crawl participants were encouraged to give a freewill donation to the Kaddatz Art Gallery.
“I’ve been there lately, and they have great work,” he said, adding that the donation will go toward programs geared at kids.
Most of the participants at the crawl were just happy that there was something out there for them.
“It’s something to do in Fergus,” said Emmy Oehler, whose face was marked by black varicose veins and dripping with fake blood.
Her friend Leanna Hanson agreed. “You’ve got to support it,” she said.
The zombies certainly seemed to catch someone’s eye. Before they started on their crawl, Ken Pentel, the Ecology Democracy Party’s Minnesota gubernatorial candidate, mingled with the crowd and told them about his campaign. He said he believes that young people will really respond to his message of a sustainable environment.
“Zombies should be given the right to vote!” he laughed.