Bay, bikes and brains: Zombies take a ride through the streets of Oakland

By
October 15, 2010

Anxiously awaiting the start of the sixth East Easy Bike Party, one zombie rider attempts to unclip a fellow rider's helmet so she can snack on her brain. (Stephanie Scerra)

There are plenty of reasons to wear a helmet while riding a bike. Aside from the obvious safety measures, it can keep your head dry when it rains, hide your bad hair day, or protect your brain from cranial craving, gray matter munching zombies.

With their clothes and faces splattered with red “blood,” the undead of all ages embarked on a 13-and-a-half-mile Zombie themed ride through the streets of Oakland on the night of October 8th. The ride was the sixth hosted by the East Bay Bike Party, a new non-profit aiming to create a community of riders who bike the second Friday of every month.

“Fun” is exactly what volunteers like Nick Urffer are aiming for, for the bikers and for themselves.

“I feel like I should just answer with a urrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggghhhhhhh,” Urffer, the undead, said, but then allowed his mortal side to speak. “We want people to have fun, but we want to be safe and respectful, too.”

Urffer and the rest of East Bay Bike Party’s host their monthly rides on a different route each time. The Zombie Ride’s route sparked numerous goolish groans of approval, for being concentrated solely in Oakland compared to the other rides in the Bay Area.

“I love Oakland, just the idea of a ride around Oakland,” said rider Carl Vu, as he gathered with other zombies in Frank Ogawa Plaza before the ride. “There’s a lot of bad things going on here, but there are good things, too.”

The East Bay Bike Party also ensures a good time by giving each ride a theme, hence this month’s zombie attire. Riders embraced the theme, sporting torn clothing, gray makeup, and “bloody” mouths. Some even carted around fake human heads and giant speakers playing zombie tunes.

“I thought it was really cool,” Mills Junior Jillian Harris said. “Being on a bike, you’re moving really slowly and you see a lot you wouldn’t see in a car.”

Biker Kevin “KB” Bautrip, who attended the Superhero and Cowboy Bike Parties in previous months.

Cyclists not only dressed the part, but acted it as well

“I represent social oppression. Zombies are discriminated against,” Urffer said. “I think times are changing and if someone wants to eat brains, they should be accepted.”

Or as rider Demetrius Marcoulids put it.

“BRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAINS!”

Harris said she definitely plans to ride in future East Bay Bike Parties.

“Hands down yes. Always. You meet the funniest, the nicest people there,” Harris said.

For information on Bike Party rides, visit the Facebook group or text ebbikeparty to 41411.


Bay, bikes and brains: Zombies take a ride through the streets of Oakland was published on October 15, 2010 in Features

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