LOGAN — A famous line from the opening scenes of George Romero’s zombie classic “Night of the Living Dead” exclaims, “They’re coming to get you, Barbara!” When the streets of Logan fell into darkness Oct. 2, a macabre horde of zombies really were on the prowl and coming to get you; however, it was thankfully only a devoted collection of volunteers for Southern Coalition for the ARTS’ Zombie 5k Walk and Run.
The night would prove to be busy for Logan as it would see temporary street closings for the 5k setup by Logan’s Fire and Police Departments, a concert filling the streets with music and a midnight showing of the ARTS’ new production of the “Addams Family.” In all, over 300 people were in downtown Logan to register for the 5k or watch the concerts and play.
Many of the wandering characters who were set to play a role hovering somewhere between life and death were made up in varying states of decay by volunteers Joseph Mendez and Aaron Stone and set lose on the city of Logan by ARTS director Jamie Dempsey-Butcher.
Once the zombies were in place, Dempsey-Butcher informed the children of the crowd that it was their job to take care of Logan’s new zombie problem: nerf-style dart guns were distributed throughout the crowd and more ammunition was made available along the route of the 5k walk and run.
The 5k took the gaggle of zombie dispatching heroes through Midelburg Island where Dempsey-Butcher explained a more controlled environment for the children existed.
While Logan’s zombie’s were being cleaned up from the streets, the local coffee shop, The Hot Cup, began to swell with patrons and concertgoers. Local bands Let the Guilty Hang and The Big Bad each played sets adding an appropriate soundtrack to the zombie-filled streets.
At midnight Oct. 2, the ARTS’ production of “The Addams Family” began. A press release from Southern Coalition of the ARTS quotes Dempsey-Butcher as saying, “We understand that the Aracoma Story performed this show in the park over the summer and had very good attendance – I saw all the outdoor shows this summer. But we do want everyone to know that this is not the same production. This is a completely different cast and really a completely different show. So, we do encourage everyone to come downtown to the Coalfield Jamboree Theatre to see our show and kick-off the Halloween season with the ARTS.”
At the event, Dempsey-Butcher went on to say, “I am completely shocked at the response. We have about 30 to 35 zombies that are out in the city streets. We have almost 50 runners registered for the 5k…we have about 50 more people here for the concert. I need to give a huge shoutout to Michael Cline at the Hot Cup. He has been more than accommodating and super supportive. I would also like to thank the Logan Police Department and Logan Fire Department for coming out and keeping us all safe.”
The ARTS will stage three more performances of “The Addams family on Oct. 9, 10 and 11. Shows on the ninth and 10th will are set to begin at 7p.m. and a matinee is scheduled for Sunday Oct. 11 at 2 p.m..
Owen Wells is a reporter for Civitas Media. He can be reached at 304-752-6950 ext. 1729 or by email at [email protected]