Zombie run scares up funds for local ROTC

Dodging obstacles and sprinting away from Zombies would be weird for a normal 5k, but for the  runners who enjoy the Zombie Run, it is all the rage.

This year will be the third annual Zombie Run, and it will be taking place on Thursday, Oct. 27 at the West Gym at UNI. Participants can register online for $20 until Oct. 26. After the 26th, participants can register online or at the door for $25. According to cadet Trey Roosa, the money earned from the run goes toward benefitting students involved in ROTC — from the annual military ball to sending students to Washington, D.C., to participate in the Army 10 Mile Run.

The Zombie Run is hosted by Lieutenant Colonel Glen P. Keith, who is part of the UNI ROTC (Reserve Officer Training Corp), and Roosa, who is part of the UNIUSA (UNI Supporters of the US Army). Both of them said that they formed the Zombie Run for a fun and engaging way for their cadets to be active and to build money for their organization.

The Zombie Run is not just running 3.1 miles. Participants are dodging brain-eating zombies while making their way through an obstacle course. While people are running, the zombies are lurking around trying to pop the balloons taped to the runners’ backs.

Roosa said the abnormal 5k “obstacles came with the fact that there are many races similar to the event that are very military focused.”

The scary race hasn’t always been this challenging and fascinating, though. “Over the years, the run has changed from just a fun run to a zombie-themed run where contestants face obstacles and real zombies,” Roosa said. “It has grown from 35 runners to over 70, and we will see how many we have this year.  We also partnered with various departments and organizations on campus to support the run; our first year the theater department helped with make-up,” Keith said.

The run is not just for cadets and army students. It is a race for all ages and skill levels as well as UNI and community members. “The primary purpose is to raise funds and provide a fun and healthy activity on campus for students and the community to participate in during the Halloween season,” Keith said. “We wanted to make it challenging and with military culture we like to overcome obstacles, plus it’s fun when you never know what’s around the corner.”

Go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/uni-rotc-zombie-run-2016-tickets-27891876353?aff=erelexpmlt for more information on how to sign up and donate.

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