Dead United

“Darkness falls across the land. You run for your life and try to stand. Creatures crawl in search of blood, to terrorize y’alls neighborhood. And though you run to stay alive, you realize you’re there for fun. For no mere mortal can resist the United Way Zombie Run!”

These are the words I heard on the radio as I was driving to meet with United Way of Central Virginia a few weeks ago. Not only did the advertisement sound cool, but it was for a United Way! I was so excited to hear the ad and definitely wanted to learn more. (Listen to the full radio advertisement below.)

United Way of Central Virginia (Lynchburg, Virginia) held their first annual zombie run this past Sunday and it was a success! They had 200+ runners and 100+ zombies show up for the event. Runners had to make it through 3.1 miles of zombie infested forest without becoming “infected.” Zombies were in charge of “spreading the infection” by collecting flags off of the runners. If a runner made it to the finish line with at least one flag left, they qualified for prizes and were considered a “survivor.” Runners received Live United T-shirts and zombie-style swag, while zombies received “Dead United” T-shirts. After the race, runners and zombies were invited to attend a post-apocalyptic party, where they could get their picture taken at the zombie photo booth and take part in a Thriller dance-off. Check out their Web site here and their YouTube video here

United Way of Central Virginia intends to use the information collected from runners and zombies to continue to develop relationships within the community.  

This is such a cool idea and I especially love how the zombies received “Dead United” T-shirts. This is a great example of an event that will attract young people to your United Way. Offer a unique event like United Way of Central Virginia’s zombie run/post-apocalyptic party and come up with clever ads that attract your community members’ attention. Tell people how they can Live United (or be “Dead United” as a zombie) and make it fun to get involved with your United Way!

Happy Halloween!

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