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Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

Est. 2014

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Is Rochester prepared for a zombie apocalypse?

Is Rochester prepared for a zombie apocalypse?

A coalition of local partners are teaming up to prevent a zombie apocalypse.

Yes, you read that correctly.

This Sunday, hundreds of participants — including high schoolers, nursing students, emergency responders, health care professionals and military members — will attend the Bounce Day disaster response simulation at Gamehaven Scout Reservation in Rochester. The goal of the community-wide event is to help improve individual and community resilience, so in the event of a large-scale disaster, we could “bounce back quickly.”

And that’s where the zombies come in.

Volunteer actors pretending to be afflicted with a made-up, zombie-inducing disease will be roaming the park. It will be up to participants to assess the “zombies” and provide care as needed. There will even be an on-site emergency shelter and makeshift triage center for practice.

Organizers acknowledge the idea of a zombie apocalypse may seem “hokey, but it is actually well validated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” Unlike so-called “realistic scenarios,” the skills learned from a zombie outbreak are applicable to every disaster and emergency.

As Dr. Ali Khan, the CDC’s former director of the Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, is quoted as saying: “If you are generally well equipped to deal with a zombie apocalypse, you will be prepared for a hurricane, pandemic, earthquake, or terrorist attack.”

More info on Sunday’s event is available here.

Correction: A previous version of this story listed the wrong date. The event is on Sunday, not Saturday.

Cover photo: Licensed / Canva

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