Author: Rachel Gallegos, Iowa City Press-Citizen
Halloween is a big holiday for Josh Christain. So when the opportunity came up to create a zombie persona for a day, he couldn’t resist.
“It’s an excuse to dress up again,” he said.
Christain and his wife, Margaret Henderson, of Iowa City, have participated in all three years of the Iowa City Zombie March. They chose a medical theme for this year’s costumes, with Christain in a surgery cap and scrubs, Henderson as the doctor — Edith Brains, neurologist — and his son, Armand, as the patient.
Saturday’s march also served as a fundraiser for local charities, this year raising money and food donations for the Iowa City Animal Care and Adoption Center, Johnson County Humane Society, Table to Table and Witty Kitties Inc.
Iowa City Zombie March organizer and founder Shawn Beatty, who dressed up this year as “The King” zombie in an Elvis costume splattered with blood, said he likes to pick small, local organizations to help each year.
“Every year, it’s hard to choose charities,” he said.
To “trick” people into donating, people received a different sticker in return at each of the charity stations. Beatty compared it to collecting Pokémon cards — by giving to all the charities, you get all the stickers, he said.
The fake blood he used was a combination of clear dishwashing liquid, red tempra paint and a little bit of blue to make it darker.
Christain made a fake arm in a mold for his son, Armand, who was the zombie patient. His real arm was hidden under his robe, while the sling held the fake arm with little pieces of “bone” — actually chopsticks — sticking out from one end.
“That was John’s brainchild so to speak,” Henderson said. “Love the puns.”
“It’s just out of the norm, a chance to create something different,” she said.
Joe Finn completed his look, a disgruntled Wal-Mart employee zombie, using latex and toilet paper for the raised wounds and scars.
“Works amazingly well,” he said.
He said last year participating in the zombie walk, they surprised the people they came across because no one really expected it.
“Once you get to the downtown pedestrian mall area, people really freak out,” he said. The walk each year goes from Happy Hollow Park down to, appropriately enough, the Deadwood Tavern.
This year’s event ended with a charity show at The Picador, with performances by the Surf Zombies, This Again and The Shondes.