Like many of you, when I travel for work or vacation, I often find myself considering how the places I visit would fare in a zombie attack. Certainly, not every neighborhood or piece of architecture lends itself to a zombie scenario, but I’ve certainly enjoyed considering the zombie-related benefits and drawbacks of structures like The Renaissance Center and The Venetian.
Anyhow, this past weekend I journeyed downstate to Onarga, IL to play a show with my band, and I’ve never before encountered a place that was structured so exactly like a level from Left 4 Dead. The whole town is shaped like an L, with impenetrable 2-story buildings on each side. There’s a railroad track cutting the town off at one end, and a weird, old-timey sign with big yellow incandescent bulbs. Really, really Left 4 Dead-y. I could picture zombies attacking from across the tracks, or turning the town’s single corner to find the entire street infested by the walking dead.
Here are some pics I took:
Also of note (though [probably?] not zombie related): There are these weird little signs that say “BIKE NO SKATE” all over downtown Onarga. (Which is to say, Onarga.) When I saw them, my first thought was: What a weird way to say “No Bikes or Skateboards.” (The sentence structure is all wrong for that, of course.) But then I considered all the variants that were possible when punctuation was applied, and began to second-guess the meaning of the signs. There was:
- “Bike? No! Skate!” (Skateboarding is appropriate while bicycling is not.)
- “Bike! No skate!” (Bicycling is appropriate while skateboarding is not.)
- “Bike no Skate” (Don’t transport Skate by bicycle.)
Anyhow, it is still a mystery.
2 thoughts on “Onarga, IL = right out of Left 4 Dead”
I have been to Onarga as well! I was on a camping trip with friends at Lake Arrowhead (which is right on top of I-57). We ate at the only Mexican restaurant in town. Bad move.
Yeah, I saw that place… and wisely steered clear.