News blog for Seattle's Fremont neighborhood

 

Zombie Takeover in Fremont: the Red, White & (Un)Dead Center of the Universe

July 3rd, 2010 by Athima Chansanchai

UPDATE: Preliminary numbers show 4,233 zombies were in Fremont yesterday, which should break the world record of 4,026, reports KOMOnews.com. We’ve contacted Ryan Reiter at Fremont Outdoor Movies for verification, which we’ll hopefully have after the holiday.

They shuffled, ambled and sometimes lunged at unsuspecting spectators. They chased zombie hunters who rationalized their attacks on them by saying, “The undead aren’t people.” They threatened to eat the living, although some chose to go vegan or organic in their dining preferences. They came caked in (fake) blood, several stages of decomposition and excelling in creativity. A lot of people have been watching a lot of zombie movies, because they were all kinds of convincing.

Red zombie

We saw several varieties of Zombie: Stormtrooper Staked by Lightsaber, Star Trek (always the red shirts!), Horror Movie Perfect, World Cup fan/Vuvuzela (stop blowing that damn horn!), Baby, Prom, Village People, Killed by Golfball, Goth, Family, Office Worker, Bride, Brain Eating, Hobo Couple, etc. Zombies don’t discriminate.

Stormtrooper Zombie

Brain eating

Zombie Bay

This is our Day of the (Un)Dead, the zombiewalk known as the Red, White & Dead event, right here in the (UnDead) Center of the Universe, Fremont.

They came in droves to try to break the Guinness Book of World Records for most zombies in one location. Seattle had 3,894 zombies turn out last year for the walk to set a record, but English zombies later one-upped us with 4,026.

Something about cold, wet climates bring out an infectious number of the zombie nation.

Eyes Zombie

They congregated on 35th Street between Phinney and 1st Avenue NW for the better part of the day, starting at noon. The actual walk did not start until after 6. Some even took coffee breaks before their big walk.

Zombie coffee break

at FOM

They went west on 35th, turned right to go down 36th, headed toward the Fremont Bridge on Fremont Avenue, and then looped around on 34th.

Radioactive Zombie

Zombie Hobos

They followed Zombie Captains who dangled body parts to lure them forward in their lumbering march.

Zombie captains

Even in their undead state, they were true Seattle zombies: they did not cross the street until the WALK sign/symbol lit up.

Zombie crossing

And where there are zombies, there are a lot of zombie hunters. But they were often outnumbered, though they did manage to slow some down. Melees broke out sporadically. But more often than not, the zombies prevailed, pushing their all-too human resistance into retreat.

Zombie hunters
Krisha Catzen, Zombie Homeland Security & Owner of Seattle’s first Pole Dancing School, Pole for the Soul

Zombie soldier

Some humans took refuge in trees, only to find themselves surrounded! Sometimes, it really did feel like being in a zombie movie.

Zombie mob
Photo credit: Janine Henkel

And some came up suddenly to those of us observing, scaring us into screaming/laughing like a girl. Which I am.

Zombie hecklers were also in attendance, most notably from the steps of the Red Door on 34th, a major undead watching area. Here, the zombies were judged, and sometimes, they didn’t respond so favorably!

Bite Zombie

We’ll let you know if they break the world record!

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Red, White & Dead Center of the Universe: Zombie takeover Saturday for the world record

June 30th, 2010 by Athima Chansanchai

While the rest of the country celebrates our country’s independence this weekend, Seattle honors its dead – its walking dead – in the second annual Red, White & Dead event. Seattle can lay claim to the “Zombie Capital of the World” once and for all in the “Dead” Center of the Universe.

This is your warning to NOT be freaked out by the sometimes very convincing zombies that will take over Fremont on Saturday by the thousands. Yeah, that’s right – enough for 3 “Resident Evil” movies! The goal is to outdo the Brits, who hold the zombie walk Guinness World Record through the Big Chill Music Festival in England.

2009 Zombie Walk

“Look out British, the Zombies are coming!” said Eric Pope of Seattle Zombie Walk, a group that helps organize the walk. “Seattle had 3,894 zombies turn out last year for the walk to set a record, but England later edged us out with 4,026. We’re back to reclaim the title, and I hope to see 10,000 zombies roaming the streets, so Seattle will hold the title for good!”

From noon to midnight Saturday at Fremont Outdoor Movies (3501 Phinney Ave. N.), there will be an attempt to beat Guinness Book of Records with most “zombies” in one location. 3,575 are expected, but as Pope mentioned, the record could be broken – again.

From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., zombies will dance and walk on sidewalks in Fremont, with North 35th Street closed from Phinney Avenue North to First Avenue NW.

Pre-register online for $3, or pay $5 at the door.

In addition to the attempt at the record and the shuffling dancing and walking that goes with channeling zombie, this year’s festivities will also include a huge Thriller Dance, Zombie fashion show, musical performances, special guests and all time Zombie classic, George A. Romero’s DAWN OF THE DEAD. And more: a blood drive, canned food drive and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the local non profit organization, the Seattle International Film Festival in support of their new film center that will be at the Seattle Center.

From Fremont Outdoor Movies:

This year also marks the “Year of the Zombie” and Seattle seems to be the center of attention, as 2010 marks another first for Seattle with ZomBcon, the world’s first Zombie Culture Convention infecting Seattle on Halloween weekend at the Seattle Center and Experience Music Project with over 100 Exhibitors, 10 interactive fan workshops, panels, a SIFF-curated film series, and Halloween Masquerade , Zombie Prom party. We plan to have a collection of experts, authors, filmmakers, historians, celebrities and all the gear and fan fare for the Quintessential Zombie fan.

We’ll be there, and we’ll post the gruesome photos here on Fremont Universe.

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Avid (rubber) duck hunters maintain world record

May 12th, 2010 by Athima Chansanchai

Tonight at 7, on King-5′s Evening Magazine, you’ll see one of Fremont’s own denizens amidst a collection that surpasses all others in the world: 5,239 rubber ducks.

Charlotte Lee with ducks

I knew I was in the right place when I saw the neon rubber duck in her window (and in my head, I heard Sesame Street’s Ernie singing about his rubber duckie).

A Guinness World Record holder since 2003, Charlotte Lee, 40 – an assistant professor in UW’s Department of Human Centered Design & Engineering – has dedicated the entire small basement of the Fremont condo she’s lived in since December 2008 to her “rubber duckies.” It took her husband – once a reluctant supporter, now an avid duck hunter – months to put up the shelves and cabinet that line the walls down there.

“I like the ducks, he likes the hunt,” Lee said. “It’s a good partnership.”

Rubber ducks

The collection in 1996 and began as gifts from friends to augment the rubber ducks they noticed she had in her bathroom. Soon, she had 13 or 14 – enough to spark an interest to build a collection. “It started out as a joke. You’re supposed to collect something respectable. But over time, the joke was on me. It’s become a serious collection, over all odds!”
[Read more →]

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