“Zombie-O”, a Zombie-themed Orienteering event designed to help Scouts improve their map and compass skill, is the brainchild of Max McAdams, a leader with Pack and Troop 30 in Shannon, GA, who also chaired the event.
“Basic Orienteering skills (learning to use a map and compass) have been an important part of Scouting since it was founded”, said McAdams. “Interest in learning these skills, which can be difficult to master, has gradually declined until the last couple of years, as GPS units have become more affordable and the popularity of events like Geocaching has risen. Two of my favorite hobbies are teaching Orienteering and Zombies, so I figured, why not combine the two?”
More than 200 Boy Scouts received special training from Z.O.R.T (Zombie Outbreak Response Team) members, who not only taught them basic orienteering skills, but also provided valuable training in how to recognize and avoid Zombies while navigating a camp-wide course and collecting “samples” at several checkpoints. Between 40 and 50 local Venturers (Scouting’s co-ed program for young men and women ages 14-20) volunteered to be “zombie-fied”, roaming the camp in small groups.
Teams of Scouts, armed only with a map, compass, watch, instructions and whistle (apparently, CSD Zombies HATE whistles!), were sent out with instructions to navigate the course and “avoid contact at all costs”, as the Zombies were considered highly contagious and dangerous. Those who completed the course and survived were invited to become Z.O.R.T. members themselves.
“The kids really had a great time,” said Matt Rood, District Executive of Gordon/Bartow Counties and staff advisor for the event, “we can definitely see this becoming an annual event”. Event Director Max McAdams also offered his thanks to the more than 80 volunteers staffing the event, as well as special thanks to Redmond Regional EMS, who was on-hand during the day to provide first aid and treatment to any potential Zombie victims.
For more information about this or other Scouting events in our area, contact the Northwest Georgia Council, Boy Scouts of America, at 706-235-5545.