Adventure rules on the last weekend of October

The rUNdead 5K will be Saturday at North Charleston Wannamaker County Park.

Halloween is a week away, but its influence reaches even into the active circles this weekend.

Among the events this weekend is the second annual rUNdead zombie 5K at Wannamaker County Park on Saturday evening, the third annual SUPer Scary SUP Race on the Folly River on Saturday afternoon and “Night of the Riding Dead” just before midnight Friday.

Last year, rUNdead introduced zombie runs to Charleston for the first time and was held at Old Towne Creek County Park, which is owned and managed by the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission.

It sold out, in part, because of the limited space at Old Towne. This year’s run will be at Wannamaker County Park in North Charleston. It has a capacity for about 2,000 runners and 200 zombies.

Participants can register as a runner, ranging from $40-$48, or as a zombie, $23-$28. Runners must run the 5K wearing three flags, much like flag football, navigating trails where zombies hide out and try to snatch the flags. If they snatch three flags, you are dead.

Runners are encouraged to dress in costume. Those who bring two or more cans of food, which will be donated to the Lowcountry Food Bank, will get an extra flag.

Among the festivities post-race will be a screening of “World War Z” on Cinebarre’s inflatable screen. (Due to its rating, the movie shown will not be recommended for children under age 17.)

Benjamin Toy, owner of On Purpose Adventures, is working with the PRC on the event and is optimistic about the event growing, even as more zombie events are being held in Charleston.

“Zombies are still hot,” says Toy. “Season 4 of (AMC’s) ‘The Walking Dead’ just started with a bigger fan base than before, and there are zombie amusement parks popping up.

“The majority of the zombie crowd is not the sparkly vampire crowd, but an educated 25 to 40 (age group) demographic that is interested in the science and notion of surviving an apocalypse. ... Some are preppers. Others just like theater and acting.”

For a complete interview with Toy, go to

Yes, you can even take your Halloween on a paddleboard in the third annual SUPer Scary SUP Race, noon-2 p.m. Saturday.

The paddling event, organized by Charleston SUP Safaris, includes a 5K, 10K, kids race and tandem dog/owner race. Competitors are urged to wear costumes. An after-party will be held at Surf Bar.

The entry fee is $40 for adults and $20 for kids and dogs. Boards are available to rent for $10. A portion of the proceeds will go the local nonprofit Salty Kidz, which helps provide local underprivileged children a chance to experience nature through paddling and surfing.

A little more low-key event, probably for the 20-something crowd, is the Friday night’s “Night of the Riding Dead,” where local cyclists, err zombies, plan to gather together at 11:30 p.m. at Marion Square for a midnight mystery ride around downtown Charleston.

The ride is expected to last about 45 minutes. The best zombie “wins a free tall boy” at an after-party. (This is a Facebook thing.)

For nearly a decade, the end of October also has been the date for the Barrier Island ECOthon. The ninth annual event will be 9 a.m. Sunday at the Isle of Palms Marina.

Now, talk about “adventure race,” the ECOthon is perhaps the most adventurous in the Lowcountry.

Participants launch kayaks from the Isle of Palms Marina and paddle three miles to Dewees Island. After landing on the beach, they run 2.2 miles to the other end, swim a quarter mile to Capers Island, run to the other end, where they turn around and repeat the course backward.

Once back at the marina, participants bike to the southern tip (or western tip, depending on your orientation) of Sullivan’s Island and return, for a total of about 18 miles.

A race that involved takes some money. Registration is $90 and a portion goes to support the efforts of the Charleston Tibetan Society. Since its origination, the ECOthon has raised and donated $18,500 to the society and the Lance Armstrong Foundation.

The founder and director of the race, Brett Carlson, says he created the ECOthon after developing a deep appreciation of the Lowcountry after “running, riding, swimming and paddling between the barrier islands for about a quarter century.” For more with Carlson, go to

And a dolphin run, to boot?

Actually the 12th annual Dolphin Run refers to the Newington Elementary School’s mascot, and the 5K run and walk will be at 8 a.m. Saturday at the school in Summerville. The cost is $25 for the 5K and $12 for a one-mile fun run.

Reach David Quick at 937-5516 or