The What You Got Fest offers films, bands, skateboard ramps, free workshops, a chance to watch a mural being painted outside the Capitol Theater - and zombies. The ghoulish creatures are a pop-culture trend with staying power, and they'll be modeling in the Olympia youth art festival's trash fashion show.
"In the trash world, zombies represent stuff that doesn't really go away," said Ruby Re-Usable, who helped youth organizers with a workshop on and materials for creating trash fashion. "Plastic bags get ratty, and they might break up into little pieces, but regular plastic bags do not decompose. They're like the undead."
With music by DJ Selector Dub Narcotic (aka Calvin Johnson), the fashion show (6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24) looks like a highlight of this year's festival.
And have no fear for your brain if you attend. The zombies will be created not by voodoo or a virus but during a free workshop on zombie makeup.
While it's created and mostly organized by youth, the What You Got Fest is open to all ages.
The festival kicks off at 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, at the Capitol Theater, with films and bands. The lineup includes youth from the Nisqually Tribe performing original music from acoustic to hip-hop and bands from the summer's Queer Rock Camp.
"They are wild and full of energy," says What You Got Festival coordinator Audrey Henley of the rock campers. "They have a message and you are going to hear it. They're going to make you listen."
The events on Saturday, Sept. 24 include films, a free skate jam with live music outside the theater, free workshops on zombie makeup and screen-printing, the trash fashion show and more music.
"This year's bands are pretty young," Henley says. "We have a lot of 13- and 14-year-olds playing. ... We have 10 bands this year that are all under the age of 20, but at least four of those bands are all under the age of 17."
And then there's the mural, created by 17-year-old Arthur Crews of Olympia.
"He came to us with a handwritten proposal," Henley says. "That was something we'd never seen before at this festival."
The new mural has the word "Olympia" with each letter filled in with images associated with the city. "It's like one of those old postcards that say ‘Welcome to Washington,' " she says.
"It was time to cover up the salmon and start on a new image, and along came Arthur."
What You Got Fest
Friday, Sept. 23, and Saturday, Sept. 24
$5 per day, $8 for both
free for workshops and outdoor activities
Capitol Theater, 206 Fifth Ave. S.E., Olympia
360.754.6670 or olympiafilmsociety.org