It’s that time of year again when the monsters crawl out of the darkness to come and haunt Lakewood.
I’ve been doing these for the better part of a decade, and this time around I had my daughter with me. She’s been getting more and more into the cosplay scene this year and decided she wanted to pull her monster cupcake out of storage for this event. The costume had to be altered to fit her (She’s grown a lot in in two and a half years) but once we added some extra frosting and accessorized with a chainsaw, she was ready to go!
For my own part, I wanted to do something related to Friday the 13th (which had been the previous day). The thing is, I have always been way more of a Freddy guy than a Jason guy (More of a Dracula fan than a Frankenstein one too fora that matter). I ended up doing a hybrid – Freddy vs. Jason. Half on each side.
A lot of the zombie walks out there have gone by the wayside. It’s fallen out of fashion, but the event at the 5 O’Clock Lounge shows no signs of slowing down. I’m glad. It’s a great charity event and was one of the ways I taught my children about giving and service that’s not just confined to Sunday mornings at Church. As long as they keep holding these zombie themed food drives, I’ll keep on showing up. See you in the spring!
The zombie walk at the Five O’Clock is one of my staples. It happens twice a year and I always try and hit at least one, if not both events. The past couple years I’ve frequently had conflicts for the spring one (though I did make it last year as Slimer) so it was nice to be back on my old stomping grounds here.
The event started with a costume malfunction. As I walked the half block from my car to the bar, something snagged on the bottom of my left monkey foot. The bottom ripped right off. While the top of the shoe still held and covered the top of my foot, I spent the entire walk with only my sock to walk in. You might say I lost my SOLE at the monster walk.
Over the last few years I’ve noticed attendance has been dipping. It always made me sad to see fewer people at these events and I had wondered if perhaps it’s time had passed. This time around though, the attendance had actually increased, with a healthy horde of monsters ready to invade Lakewood. Indeed, while there were still some familiar faces missing, it was cool to see some friends that don’t usually make this event. The evil clowns Sickin and Scurvy showed up. I know Scurvy’s alter ego Unidrone Cosplay from the convention circuit – particularly Fantasticon where she and her partner won the costume contest in their Five Nights at Freddy’s suits. They’d driven two hours from thier home in central Ohio to be with us Saturday. Also in attendance was the redoubtable James T. Quirk. Jim is an old friend and occasionally works with me in Heroes United. He’d donned an appropriate red shirt before zombieing up for the walk.
There were more kids than ever. This one in particular is a family freindly walk. I’ve brought my own kids from time to time. They’re getting older now, but the number of really small children there was amazing. One of the things that is such great fun about this sort of event is watching the creepy monster kids just running around and being kids. Chasing each other, trying to catch the drone, harassing the clowns. There was a kid Pennywise in dirty black and orange that was obsessed with my gorilla suit.
I’ve got to admit, it was one of those days where I really didn’t want to get out of bed. i’d debated going all day, but in the end I like these kind of events. We raised a lot of money and canned goods for the Cleveland food bank, and I got to pull the Gorilla out of my closet to do so.
I expect to be back in the fall.
Slowly the metal tentacle slid around Rhonda, getting in position to take a candid photo. She looked over at the click, startled, then paused.
“I know that arm!”
She whirled around and hugged the zombie Doctor Octopus behind her…and that’s how this fall’s zombie walk started out for me.
The Five O’Clock is kind of home base for Cleveland Zombie Walks. Familiar faces and a neighborhood that still likes poking thier heads out the windows to see the zombies shamble.
This was a special walk for me because the wife came along to help us raise money and food for the Second Harvest food bank. Ryan was back in his old Sgt. Cunningham fatigues and in the back of the bar, performers from the Legion of Terror (of the local huanted house at Bloodview) ate fire and blew streams of fluid to create huge fireballs.
We got started about twenty minuets late. In an open field the little clowns and ghouls chased a drone filming the whole thing. Undead Doc Ock menaced Lakewood and the bloody day wore on.
These days, I’m seeing fewer zombie walks around the area, but as long as the dead haunt Lakewood, I’ll be joining them.
You know, it seems like the zombie walk at the Five O’Clock is the one I’ve been going to for the longest, even before it changed into the current Monster Walk incarnation. It may however be the first year that I have done this one alone. Usually I have at least one of the girls with me, but they are kind of growing out of these events. To make up for things, I decided to go with a bigger costume this year and pulled out my Slimer from last fall.
They kicked off the walk with a fire show, fire eating and blowing – a lot of fun stuff before we gathered up the hordes and haunted the streets of Lakewood…but you can see for yourself what it was like!
It was slightly chilly for a spring afternoon as the creatures crawled out of their holes and congregated in the back patio of the 5 o’clock lounge for their annual food drive and monster walk. I was particularly excited this time around because my girls were both with me – but something was different this time… This year, instead of being zombies, they had chosen to arrive as hunters. Madeline carried her bow, and Lydia packed her crossbow under her purple survivor vest.
The monster walks at the 5 o’clock lounge are familiar – it’s where the first zombie walks I can remember started, and the rout is a traditional block of Lakewood that I’ve spent many years on. It’s probably the one that I’ve taken the kids on the most frequently as well – with familiar streets and faces. The umbrella corporation was there, as well as our typical field leader – this time decked out in a slightly more armoured persona of major iseue. The zombie hunter aspect is new for the kids though, it’s something I’ve been suggesting for years since they don’t always dig the make up… This time however, it’s fueled by a desire to play a little more into the world that Maddie is creating with her backyard zombie movie. Indeed, the girls cornered various zombies before the walk and got some footage for their web series…
I was actually a little disappointed with my own make up, but the kids decision to go was a last-minute one… Lydia informed me the night before that she wanted to go and wanted a costume, but she didn’t know what… Something like survival clothing – with tools and weapons on it… I cut up an old purple bag and added a walkie-talkie, spare arrows, and grenades to it (she was inexplicably excited about the grenades – a tool she recognises from some of her video games). On the back she requested a cute and tie zombie picture which I whipped up using gel markers, paint, and glitter.
With Maddie deciding the day of the zombie walk that she wanted to go, there is no time to really create much for her though I did build her some balsawood arrows with blunted foam tips, that way she can carry her bow though she wasn’t allowed to fire it. She was a little bummed, especially since Lydia was allowed to shoot her soft foam arrows from her crossbow.
While your average zombie walk brings out the typical undead featuring torn skin, splattered blood, and oozing sores, The 5 o’clock monster walk always seems to encourage a greater variety of creatures – you never quite know what kind of monsters will show up… Killer panders or demented Easter bunnies – Gas mask fiends, zombified dogs and Teen Titans, not to mention the star cars from the weaponised zombie Dodge, to the glitterati art car that pulled up behind it.
Lydia mention to her mother that she wanted to go to the zombie walk because it was something that daddy liked and she wanted to do something with me… I think that’s the best part of these kind of things… We all had fun, and in the end the walk wrapped up too soon – leaving the girls asking when the next one was. We’ll find out soon.