Project Undead: Another Year, Another Haunt

Down to the wire now. Murphy has entered stage right and wreaking all kinds of chaos on my valiant attempts to make my blog quota for this month. Turns out my hotspot can’t even get a signal on one of the busiest highways in the Midwest. Everyone is excited about driverless vehicles and we can’t even get reliable Internet access driving on major highways. I envision some kind of Simpson’s episode where all the autonomous vehicles suddenly take a right turn off the road when then hit a dead spot. Well, no time to cry over spilt milk – I have typing to do (and hopefully upload if I ever get a signal again).

Decided the last post of month would focus on something that is taking a majority of the time left over after races and training. That’s right, I bring you the first of what is likely to be many posts on the road to Halloween. Our annual Halloween party is fast approaching which means work is picking up on the highlight of the night – the Trail of Tears our haunted trek through the woods. I say picking up, rather than start because the work on this trail is a year long event. Ask my wife who has to put up with all the decoration builds that are always cluttering up the basement. Thought I would give you glimpse at one of those new decorations

Zombie Build - Halloween 2017

Although it is tough for me to admit it around friends, I do hang out on Pinterest a lot. I get accused of being a soccer mom by Linda. Truth is, the haunters are all over that site and a great wealth of ideas. One of the links that caught my attention was a backlit witches scene someone had posted. This got me thinking that would be a good idea for the trail. Seemed simple enough, cut out some shapes, add some lights and presto – new scare. To switch it up a bit, I wanted to go with a zombie theme.  First task was to find some decent zombie shapes.  That ended up being a bit of work searching through the expanse that is the Internet.  Probably went through a couple thousand images and eventually narrowed it down to two – note, not sure the source of these images are, but all rights remain with that identity – this is a non-profit use and only documented here as a reference to the concept.  Those images were placed on a grid and printed out on a standard paper.  Using the tried and true method from my childhood, gridded up larger sheets of butcher paper and transferred images by hand.  The key was to minimize cost (a critical theme in my decoration planning).  I knew I wanted to use plywood, so that gave a 4×8 dimension to work with without having to invest in multiple sheets.  With a few tweaks and rearranging, I got it to fit.  Cut those larger versions out and laid them out on the plywood.  Note, Linda and I spent a loooong time in Menards trying to find the cheapest option.  Turns out, 3/4 sealed underlayment was the cheapest plywood choice – ~$15 a sheet.  A bit rough on one side, but nice and smooth on the top side.

Zombie Build - Halloween 2017

Hit the jump to see how these new decorations turn out!

Continue reading Project Undead: Another Year, Another Haunt