KEY WEST (CBSMiami/FKNB) -- Several thousand costumed "creatures" pedaled through Key West during the Zombie Bike Ride that concluded the opening weekend of Fantasy Fest, the Florida Keys' first major special event since Hurricane Irma struck the island chain Sept. 10.
More than 6,000 participants biked along the beaches and streets of the island city wearing dead-white face paint, gory tattered garments typical of zombie lore, and offbeat accessories that ranged from top hats to tutus.
Among standouts in the Sunday evening event were a "grim reaper" carrying a FEMA sign, a reference to the Federal Emergency Management Agency that provides disaster assistance; a strange flock of zombie-flamingo hybrids and a swashbuckling pirate whose bike platform held his "skeleton crew."
Other notable participants included passengers in a ferocious fanged cart, a bride and groom who looked like cemetery escapees and enough eerie clowns to populate a circus.
The spooky cyclists traveled a route along Key West's Atlantic Ocean shore and into a section of picturesque Old Town -- culminating in the ZombieFest party on famed Duval Street.
The Fantasy Fest costuming and masking festival continues through Sunday, Oct. 29, with dozens of masquerades, themed parties and costume competitions -- all highlighted by an Oct. 28 parade featuring elaborately decorated motorized floats.
Keys tourism officials report that there are still rooms available for Fantasy Fest, but encourage making reservations before traveling to the festival.
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