/Defend yourself against zombies at Blake’s Big Apple

Defend yourself against zombies at Blake’s Big Apple

Zombie Paintball
by Liz Wittemore

The cold October night started off with what was without a doubt the most delicious caramel apple I’d ever eaten.

It ended with getting stared down by a giant clown with a chainsaw and experiencing the thrill of shooting zombies with a paintball gun.

This is just a typical weekend night during Halloween at Blake’s Big Apple.

Not to be confused with Blake’s Orchard and Cider Mill that is also located in Armada, Blake’s Big Apple is home to Blake’s Halloween attractions, and is located on 33 mile and North Avenue.

This year Blake’s offers four attractions for Halloween: a three level haunted barn, the haunted hayride, a kid-friendly Spookyland, and Zombie Paintball Safari.

“All the other attractions are busy, but paintball I believe is our number one attraction,” said Blake’s event coordinator Tony Agosta. “People like to get involved. You get to shoot something and be part of the scare.”

Zombie Paintball Safari takes you out on a wagon equipped with eight paintball guns through a series of scenes where you have to defend your wagon from zombies.

Each gun starts off with 80-100 paintballs. Riders can choose to purchase more during the ride. 140 more paintballs is $10 with the addition of a souvenir tube. If the buyer chooses to get another after that it’s discounted to $8.

The zombies have masks that are dipped in latex with pieces of burlap bag on them to give the appearance of melting skin.

“We do as much as we can to make the masks look life-like, but safety is our number one goal,” said Agosta.

This is Blake’s second year of offering the zombie paintball attraction.

According to Agosta, last year there was a four to six hour wait. With the addition of four more wagons, to make a total of eight now, the wait time has been cut in half.

“On average a couple thousand people go through, it’s really caught on,” said Agosta. “I’ve never seen the crowds act so excited about shooting live zombies. It really gets the crowd going. It’s been phenomenal.”

Zombie Paintball Safari co-manager Vince Fecteau had a few interesting stories after seeing so many people go through.

“There was a woman who apologized every time she shot,” said Fecteau. “Another time there was this sweet and innocent looking little 8 or 9-year-old girl who couldn’t hurt a fly, but by the end she was a ruthless zombie hunter. She ran out of rounds then took over her father’s gun.”

To ride Zombie Paintball Safari by itself is $19.95 per person. It is suggested to bundle attractions to lower the individual prices of the attractions. VIP tickets, which include all four and VIP lines, are $49.95 per person.

For more ticket combos check their website at hauntedblakes.com.

As of right now, the attractions are open until Sunday, Oct. 27. According to Agosta, it’s still being decided whether to be open the night of the 30 and 31.

Check their Facebook or Twitter page for updates.

   Contact Liz Whittemore at lizphotosesg@gmail.com

Liz Whittemore

Photo Editor