BY JOY STRUTHERS
The Kitchener Zombie Walk dug up more zombies and characters this year than ever before. The eighth annual walk on Oct. 15 started at the Kitchener Public Library and featured zombies of all types and ages, zombie hunters, predator and even a man dressed up as a wrestler, the Ultimate Warrior.
The event’s organizer, Ronald Hoppe, greeted people enthusiastically and walked around the front of the building, checking in with volunteers.
Hoppe was pleased that around 20 people registered for the walk. Another 10 people showed up and took part. A few onlookers also joined in.
Each participant donated canned goods and volunteer Katie Brogee said they ended up with over three full bags of food to donate to the food bank, and around $15 in cash.
“Every little bit helps,” she said.
Brogee had never volunteered at the walk before, but is involved with Kitchener Comic Con.
Lichwood Grove, a group that plays amtgard, a live action role-playing game, demonstrated their fighting techniques and encouraged people to take part.
Kendall Patterson was dressed in garb that would be typical for a warrior caste and showed people some simple sword fighting with soft weapons.
“We use a hit location-based system. If you get hit in the leg you lose a leg, if you get hit in the arm you lose an arm. If you get hit in the body you’re dead,” said Patterson.
This group encourages people to dress up in costumes that they love and show off their personalities. They are not all warriors, but also magical creatures and fantasy characters like wizards, healers and bards.
Combat is a big part of amtgard, but so is acting and socializing. Many artists get involved by creating weapons, armour, costumes and clothing. Writers and musicians can perform poetry and song.
Children and adults enjoyed sparring with each other in front of the library in the garden area by the sidewalk and quickly got used to the rules of combat.
Patterson encouraged everyone to join them Wednesday evenings at 5 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 3 p.m. at 10 Chopin Dr., near the Victoria Community Centre. The group has lots of weapons to share so people do not need to come prepared.
“All you have to do is show up,” he said.
The walk began with a few instructions from Hoppe, who jumped up on
the concrete step to address the crowd.
“Do not jump into traffic, I don’t care if you’re dead or not,” he cautioned the zombies. “Do not eat the people.”