Saturday, October 25, 2014
Ah-Nab-Awen Park, downtown Grand Rapids
6:30-7:00 pm waves
Run a five kilometer course within the quarantine area. Conquer the infamous Apocalypse Avenue and Kill Hill. Dodge zombies looking for “fast food.” Race against darkness and survive the Zombie apocalypse.
You’ll be given two “life strips” – flag football flags – to tuck in your shorts or pants, if you want them. For each one you keep safe until you exit the quarantine area, you’ll have one minute subtracted from your time. No worries if you lose both; you are not disqualified. Just keep running and enjoy the experience of running the most unique night race ever held.
Registration is online only.
|Through July 31||Aug. 1-Oct. 20||Oct. 21-24|
|Runner w/ tech shirt||$39||$45||$45 (shirt* is not included; $13 after race if we have any left)|
|Zombie w/ tech shirt||$15||$15||Shirt not available; $13 after race if we have any left|
|Zombie, no shirt||FREE||FREE||TBD based on need|
Zombies stay out on the course for all waves. Zombies do not run the course; they wait for runners along the way, scaring them and grabbing their life strips but at a realistically slow pace. Any zombies who are over-aggressive, knock down runners, or make the experience miserable for any reason will be eaten. Seriously, we reserve the right to yank you off the course or ban you from future races for obvious infractions. We will require you to wear a race number on your back so we can record jerk zombies and ban them from the next race. More on this under the Rules page.
Can runners dress as zombies? That would be really confusing and might result in cannibalism. Please pick one role or the other if possible. Runners run; zombies eat..
Zombies participate for free but you must register online via credit card.
NEW: We will leave it up to the parent(s)’ discretion whether to have their kids run with life strips, understanding that the chance of a collision with a zombie is much greater with the strips than without. All runners 13 years and younger must run with a parent or guardian. Runners 14-17 should be in a group per parent approval.
Zombies must be at least 14 years old to grab life strips from runners. Zombies younger than 14 must be with their parents in the “no feed” zones located at the beginning and end of the race (north zones). Zombies 14-17 should be with a parent or guardian or in a group per parent approval.
The goal is to minimize the risk of collisions between adults and young kids. Safety is really important, especially with a race at night. If you have a child who is near 14 and can definitely handle a collision, you may ask for an exception.
A parent or guardian must sign the waiver for anyone under 18, runner or zombie.
Your children may NOT be left unattended at the start/finish or anywhere on the course while you run. This seems so obvious, especially for a night race with people in costumes, but we were alerted to an incident in Kalamazoo that fortunately did not turn serious but has made us extra sensitive to this.
All runners (and zombies who pay $15) registered by October 20 receive this long-sleeved tech shirt (sorry; only available from the shirt manufacturer in unisex sizes). Inspired by the movie Zombieland and its rules for surviving the zombie apocalypse. You could skip the race and it still might be worth the entry fee. But don’t skip the race. The shirt is your trophy for surviving; proof to those sissies who only run daylight races.
MERCHANDISE Zombie Dash 16 oz. stainless steel mugs will be available for purchase at check-in for $10. Magnets (bumper-strength) are $4. We believe these prices are lower than almost all other races.
Although this is purely for fun, we will have prizes for fastest finishers and raffle winners (including Gazelle Sports and Qdoba gift cards, Walking Dead DVDs, zombie books, haunted house passes, etc.).
The race will be professionally chip-timed by Epic Race Timing.
We will give over 20% of our profits to Michigan Blood and the Michigan Blood Stem Cell Programs. Proceeds will allow runners and zombies to register for the Be the Match national marrow donor program at no charge. This is normally a $104 test. For more details on our cause and how you can support it and race for free, go to our Race for Free/Charity Partner page.
Sunday, October 19
Regular registration with shirt ends
Midnight. You can still sign up Oct. 20-23, but a shirt is not included. If available after the race, you may purchase one for $15.
Thursday, October 23
Late registration closes
5:00 pm (registration is online only)
Friday, October 24
Early bib/shirt pick-up/free Michigan Blood Be The Match registry event
11:00 am-7:00 pm. Gazelle Sports, 3930 28th ST, Grand Rapids. Yes, please pick up bibs and shirts for friends if you have their waiver!
Saturday, October 25
(All RUNNER activities below are at Ah-Nab-Awen Park, 220 Front ST, NW, downtown GR; no same-day registration. Zombie check-in is at Sixth Street Bridge Park, 759 Monroe Ave NW.
Same-day bib/shirt pickup and basic zombie make-up
starts at 5:00 pm; arrive 45 minutes before your wave start
5:15 pm. Map with feed zones to be provided via email.
Zombies get brief training and head to feeding zones
6:00 pm. Map with feed zones to be provided via email.
6:30-7:00 pm. Time is based on the chip attached to your bib so we will send you out at a steady pace. You can start in other waves if you are early or late. Sunset is at 6:40 pm. Darkness is likely to fall just after 7:00 pm.
8:00 pm course cleared (please choose an early wave to avoid course clearing time if necessary)
Award ceremony, raffle
First items raffled around 8:00 pm. Some items to be raffled later in the evening.
Because of the people-power needed to process the time bonuses, finish times and places may not be known until a day after the race but we hope to have them by 10:00 pm.
BEFORE THE RACE
Ah-Nab-Awen Park is located in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids. The best address for an online map tool is 220 Front Ave NW, 49504, although it’s not actually on Front Ave and the section of Front Ave shown on the map is now blocked off.
The park is regarded as one of the most beautiful spots in the city with the Grand River, DeVos Place and high-rise hotels one side and the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum on its other side.
The closest free parking lots (map) are the Scribner Lot under US-131 or the Dash West Area 7 Lot just west of US-131 off Mt. Vernon. Both are just a short walk west of the park. From the Dash lot, note that you will need go north to Bridge or south to Pearl to get to the park. Also, all metered parking downtown is free Saturday evening except for Monroe Center and a few spots along Ottawa northwest of Fulton.
View Larger Map
Please consider joining the National Marrow Donor Registry at the Michigan Blood Be The Match registry event on Friday from 11 am to 7 pm or on Saturday before the race. It’s FREE to racers (normally $104), paid for by proceeds from the race. Go to www.miblood.org/be-the-match-registry for details. You may also request a kit to be sent to you. You can save a life!
We will send you your race number the day before the race. Please have that and your waiver with you at check-in. Maybe be a good friend and pick up race stuff for your friends, but only if they give you their signed waiver ahead of time; this keeps lines short on Saturday evening. Please bring a bag to carry items if you are picking up for others.
Arrive at least 45 minutes before your wave time if you check in on Saturday. Get your shirt, “bib” number (with disposable chip on back), and safety pins. Attach your number on the front of your shirt/jacket. Your bib must be visible at the start and finish. If it’s covered with clothing, you may not receive a chip time. Do NOT fold your bib or tuck it away.
Here’s a layout of the start/finish area. Portajohns and bathrooms are located on the south side of the park.
ZOMBIE SAME-DAY CHECK-IN and PRE-RACE GATHERING
Zombies will gather at 5:15 PM on the EAST side of the Grand River at Sixth Street Bridge Park, just south of Sixth ST/Newberry, west of Monroe. If you punch in 759 Monroe NW, that should do the trick. Those who did not check in on Friday will get their bib number and shirt, if purchased. Zombies will get a briefing on safe behavior and guidance on where their assigned zone is located.
View Larger Map (Google Maps)
WHAT TO WEAR
A headlamp or flashlight with fresh batteries is required for waves 2 and 3. Survivors should plan to race in running attire, or, if you want to get in on the costume thing, an outfit reflecting your role as survivor (e.g., the tattered look, military scout look, Shaun of the Dead outfit, superheroes, etc.). You must have clothing that allows you to tuck in the two life strips of cloth you will receive that zombies are hungry for. You will not receive life strips if you are wearing a jacket or shirt that covers up more than six inches of the strip. For each strip you have at the end of the race, you will have one minute subtracted off your time.
You may bring equipment to complement your costume before and after the race, but due to safety, you are not allowed to run with any hard or sharp objects.
Zombies should, well, look like zombies. Please come to the race all zombie-fied. We will not have make-up on site for this race. Again, for safety you may not take any hard or sharp prop into the attack zones. You may take a headlamp/flashlight to help you see where you are going to station yourself but the course has quite a few lights on it so this is likely not necessary.
Be sure to check in with the costume contest judges before the race to get scored for our costume contest. Survivors in costume are also eligible. Prizes will include Walking Dead DVDs and other zombie-related prizes.
We will race rain or shine… or snow. In the event of a thunderstorm, tornado, or freak lake-effect blizzard, we will postpone the race until conditions improve. We will not be able to reschedule on a different date due to over $7,000 in costs (police, road closure crew, permits, ambulance, etc.) we would have to pay again. We will do everything we can do get the race complete that evening. During the race, please seek shelter during these conditions. We will not have tents so please bring rain gear and umbrellas if necessary.
We would encourage you to invite friends and family to watch the race. We will post race maps so spectators know your route. There is no cost to spectate (unlike some national races that charge $20-40. Sheesh.).
Walkers are allowed as long as you stay to the far edge of the path or road, for safety and to reduce the chance of backups where the course is narrow. Walkers must jog through the narrow dirt trail where backups happened last year. We recommend walkers go in the earliest wave if they wish to finish before the course is cleared.
DURING THE RACE
See the Course page for details on your mission, feed zones, aid station, etc. The course is 3.1 miles in length, not counting all the dashing you’ll do from side to side!
See the Rules/Format page for details on what to wear, the life strips, what to do and not do, etc.
We will have medics on site. In an emergency while on the course, find a volunteer with a phone or call 911.
Improvements from last year
This year zombies will be assigned to feed or no feed zones. Also, Apocalypse Avenue will now be one way only so we can make use of the full width of the street and eliminate bottlenecks where survivors, well, didn’t survive much. We expect more people to keep their strips until the end as a result.
Zombies will also be required to wear race numbers on their backs so we can capture contact information for those zombies ruining a fun experience for runners and ban them from the next race until they change their unruly ways!
AFTER THE RACE
Join us for the post-race fruit, snacks and awards. We’ll pass out some prizes. This isn’t a serious trail race but we’ll still have a lot of prizes/gift certificates from Gazelle Sports and other sponsors and raffle prizes (e.g., Qdoba, The Walking Dead Season 3 DVDs, Zombieland and World War Z DVDs and books, etc.)
The charity partner for this race is Michigan Blood and the Michigan Blood Stem Cell Program, which educates the public about the importance of the Be The Match registry and marrow/stem cell donation. The stem cell program recruits potential marrow/stem cell donors for the National Marrow Donor Program’s Be The Match registry. Michigan Blood is also a regional collection site for stem cell donations. 70% of patients suffering from illnesses like leukemia, lymphoma and 70 other blood related diseases, turn to the Be The Match registry for a matching marrow/stem cell donor. Every year around 10,000 patients look to the Be The Match registry for a donor.
Questions? www.facebook.com/TheZombieDash is a great place to ask
questions and get answers so others can learn from your question. For questions specific to you, email Mark VanTongeren, race director.