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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

Monster Jam is here, bring on the noise



Absurdly huge trucks with names like Grave Digger and El Toro Loco. Pickup-truck pig roasts. Lee Mom_monstertruck Greenwood’s God Bless the USA. Monster Jam is so wrong, but at the same time so awesome. Here's why:

If you have remote control cars in your house, you know the fun of watching them ram into things. This is just a large scale version of that.

Take the kids? Absolutely. Despite the testosterone overload, it’s very G-rated. They play Lee Greenwood’s God Bless the USA at the beginning, for gosh sakes. How edgy can it be? Plus, the drivers are very gracious about posing for photos and signing autographs in the Pit Party. And it’s a cheap night out. You can tailgate and get show tickets that start at $15. This year they’ve added a second show, so if you miss out on this Saturday’s ear blaster, there will be another one Feb. 6

Here's some fun facts to know:

  • Trucks cost upwards of $150,000.
  • They stand 11 feet tall and 12 feet wide, with tires as tall as Paula Abdul (5 feet).
  • The 10,000-pound trucks use methanol, not gasoline, but who cares when they only get about 225 yards per gallon?
  • It takes a crew of eight people some 18 to 20 hours over three days to construct the track. They truck in 3,500 cubic yards of dirt to spread inside Raymond James Stadium. They crush some 3,000 junk vehicles a year for Monster Jam, including cars, old ambulances, school buses and a crowd favorite: old motor homes.

And why do they do all this? Because it’s loud and the trucks fly 200 feet into the sky and it’s awesome when Grave Digger flies through the air and lands on a motor home and it explodes like a confetti cannon.

The event is Saturday and Feb. 6 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. The tailgating and Pit Party to meet the drivers is 2:30 to 5:30 p.m., the show starts at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $15, $30 for club seats, through Ticketmaster. Get $3 discount coupons at Dairy Queen, and get a free Monster Truck Ride Pass at Advance Auto Parts stores. Free pit passes are available at local Southern Ford Dealers. You can also pick up a four-ticket deal at Metro PCS locations.

-- Sharon Kennedy Wynne

[Photo: Times file]

[Last modified: Thursday, May 13, 2010 11:05am]


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