What makes for a great Zombie event?
We are approaching the Summer period and the phone hasn’t stopped ringing as more potential recruits for zombie boot camp join up. We are now in year 5 of zombie boot camp and wolfmen and business is even busier.
I remember sitting down with the sceptics when I had the idea of a zombie themed event and nobody believed that you could create a company out of a pipe dream, well how wrong were they? We are going through a period of investment to add more to what we already do. Recently we introduced zombie amputees to add that extra gore factor. This has proved very interesting especially when gauging the customer’s reaction. To date we have had 2 people faint at the realism of the simulated injuries and many just stop in their tracks. During a recent Asylum event a group of 3 lads looked at the legless zombie and refused to enter the room.
I often ask myself what makes for a great event. Firstly, you need great customers the majority of our customers are either on a stag event or hen party. Groups turn up excited and not quite knowing what they have signed up for. We purposely like to keep everybody in the dark as it adds to the experience. The kit and equipment is also important as the kit we use is the real thing; occasionally a customer will complain that the Kevlar body armour and helmets are too heavy. The answer is no we can’t change it, that’s what the army would issue you with in the event of a zombie outbreak, so suck it up and fall in before you get bitten!
The zombies are really important, evidently. We normally get volunteers who are generally pretty fit and have a temperament like a pet Labrador, playful but they know when to stop. We offer full contact events but not actual harmful game play. It’s hot, sweaty and noisy but the plan is not to send anyone home unhappy or injured. We have enough problems with the walking dead let alone the walking wounded.
The tempo of the event needs to be paced so that everyone enjoys themselves especially when we have our corporate customers. We need to make sure that any firm that visits us has a fab time and nobody misses work the next day. With our corporate customers we actively encourage team building and a hint of leadership training. We have been amazed in the past when the youngest person in the group takes up the challenge and leads their team’s mates to victory. A lot of our corporate groups have booked on the basis of a staff member doing zombie boot camp as part of a stag party.
It’s important with corporate groups that they win. At the end we will always have a bit of a ceremony to present the best riot cop, best riot squad and leader of the day a certificate of achievement. Like the stag and event parties people get the chance to see how others shape up against a hoard of flesh chomping zombies.
Zombie, werewolf and horror events are here to stay as us Brits just love a challenge. We today see entertainment and adventure as an important part of our lives. The more immersive the better, the more blood and guts we love it. The team at zombie boot camp want to continue to innovate and not just offer great events we want to offer fantastic events.
We are actively innovating to offer an immersive horror event based on the film Aliens. How cool will that be dressed up as a Colonial Marine fighting for your lives against a determined alien force.