By KEN HEGAN – via MSN Travel
The zombie plague is spreading fast.
Now, in BC’s Fraser Valley, a forest has been taken over by brain-eating zombies.
Zombie Combat Zone (ZCZ) just opened to offer zombie-fighting carnage with Hollywood props and makeup. According to the ZCZ website, it’s “Canada’s most authentic Zombie scenario” (and the only immersive zombie experience in Canada) located on “57 acres of insanely creepy forest” by the Panther Paintball grounds at 19022 16th Avenue, Surrey, BC (look for the bloody red hand sign).
It’s designed to be an interactive theatre experience with an actual storyline which the owner, movie props master Ron McCall, describes as “Tony and Tina’s Wedding meets zombie apocalypse.”
When you arrive at the ZCZ, soldiers brief you on the outbreak, dress you in tactical gear, give you weapons training, then arm you with a realistic-looking paintball gun.
Armed with just a paintball gun, limited ammo, and “all the guts you can muster, ZOMBIE COMBAT ZONE will push you to the edge….and maybe over!” warns their site.
Actors are portraying zombies, soldiers, scientists, and more. And despite the mayhem, there are rules: “No alcohol, drugs, or weapons of any kind. No cell phones. Do not touch actors or make any physical contact with the zombies. No videos or photography inside the Zone or on the compound.”
Clutching your gun, you then venture into the forest where 20 zombies lie in wait, eager to feast on your flesh and brains. The ZCZ promises “there will be blood, gore, zombies, violence, loud noises, gunfire, strobes, smoke, fire and darkness. You may get blood on you too.”
Groups of between 8 and 12 are welcome, and the more victims, er, friends you bring, the cheaper it is. You can show up solo, pay $95 and be thrown in with a ragtag crew of strangers. Or bring 11 of your friends and it costs $50/each to participate ($600 for 12). A cheap-ish price to pay for a chance to battle an undead army and save the world.
Think you’d be a champion zombie blaster?
According to McCall, that’s what everyone thinks. But in this interview with CBC TV, he said, “[I’ve had] one too many conversations with people bragging about what they would do in a zombie apocalypse so I said, ‘OK I’m going to put you in one and let’s see what you do ‘cause I’m betting you are going to run scared.'”
Oh, and if you’re looking for a fun job this fall, ZCZ is hiring people to become zombies for $13-15 per hour. Shifts are from Thursday to Saturday, dusk till 1 a.m.
To book your tour through the Zombie Combat Zone, visit zombiecombatzone.com
— Ken Hegan
Photos via Ron McCall / Zombie Combat Zone