FORT SILL, Oklahoma (Oct. 28, 2019) -- It was a busy day at Lake Elmer Thomas Oct. 26, as Fort Sill Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation held its annual Fall Festival in the day, and its Zombie Run at dusk.Over 600 people were expected at the free festival which ran from noon to 4 p.m., said Tenille Russell, LETRA program manager. The big draw was the pumpkin patch."This year we have 800 pumpkins, all sponsored by Raytheon, and it's all free to the public," she said. "It's all about family fun, making memories."Virtually all LETRA amenities were operating, such as its archery range, miniature golf course, watercraft, inflatable bounce houses, and lodge, where children could get their faces painted. And, visitors took a hayride to get to the pumpkin patch.Volunteers helped run the activities, Russell said. These included about 20 Soldiers from the Fort Sill Noncommissioned Officer Academy's Advanced Leader Course Class No. 001-020. Other volunteers were from MWR, their families, and other units.Other sponsors for the two events included Sprint communications, 5-Star Nutrition, Fort Sill Federal Credit Union, USAA, First Command, and Trail of Fears Haunted Scream Park.Trail of Fear officials promoted its two haunted attractions, as well as its free upcoming December Trail of Cheer, said Brandy Derr, business manager."We come out and support the Army community, because they come and support us," said Derr, who dressed as a steampunk airship pirate.
About 7 p.m., 75 runners and walkers began the 5K Zombie fun run. The run began at the beach parking lot and took participants around the LETRA cabins and back to the lodge area.People, especially children, like to be scared, but not too scared so about 20 zombies hidden on the run route popped out from behind trees and cabins to frightfully delight the runners. There were scare zones; and friendly zones -- in case people got too traumatized, Russell said.MWR volunteer Sarah Rucker registered runners for the event."I just want them to have fun and to learn that LETRA is such a family friendly place with a lot to offer," she said.