Return of the Lynchburg Horror Walk

Attention people of Lynchburg, this is not a drill. Zombies will take over downtown Lynchburg beginning at 5 p.m. Oct. 15. 

Scrappy clothes and fake blood make for a realisitic horror event – for a good cause. 

The Lynchburg Zombie walk is an annual event where people bring canned food, dress up as zombies and get exercise by walking around downtown Lynchburg with lots of fun events and competitions.

“At the heart of the zombie walk is a canned food drive,” Lynchburg Zombie Walk founder Patrick Hubble said. “I always thought it was kind of fun – or an irony – to play from the idea that traditionally in movies, zombies are looking around for food, whereas these zombies … actually bring food.” 

The “entrance fee” for the event is to bring canned food that will be given directly to Daily Bread, a soup kitchen in downtown Lynchburg. In the past years, the zombie walk collected over 2,000 pounds of canned goods to donate to food banks in the Blue Ridge area.

Hubble said he was inspired to start the event in Lynchburg after seeing metropolitan cities host zombie walks. After brainstorming ways to help the community and getting a team involved, the event became successful  in Lynchburg.  

“I thought it was a unique way to give back to the community while having a little fun at the same time,” Hubble said.

Hubble also said he’s excited that this year, Lynchburg residents can finally celebrate the 10th annual walk after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“I expect this year to have several hundred people show up,” Hubble said. “Usually around 150 to 200 people show up, but with the excitement building and not hosting the event for two years, I expect we are going to have a lot more than that.”

Throughout the years, the event has included Halloween-themed competitions such as brain-shaped Jell-O eating contests and Michael Jackson “Thriller” dance battles. The walk itself is also watched by judges, who give prizes based on the best zombie outfit and walk. 

“Every year, we have a prize for the best and most authentic looking zombies for adults and children, ranked first through fifth place,” Hubble said, “Not only do we have competitions, but we also have lots of photo-ops and … a donation station for all the food brought in.” 

The walk itself normally follows a path where all the “infected” zombies gather at the Lynchburg Market parking lot and follow Main Street all the way down to loop back through 9th Street. However, this year, Hubble said the route may change for a “fresher feel” of the event. Hubble said more will be announced as the event date moves closer.

More information on the event can be found on the Lynchburg Zombie Walk Facebook page.

Wallace is a feature reporter for the Liberty Champion

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