If you have not been to a Monster Jam, you must not have a boy or girl in your life who loves trucks, noise, dirt, wheelies, crashes, suspense, thrills, and good, clean, PG-rated fun.
“Monster Jam Triple Threat Series” is happening this weekend, inside the completely snow-free Hampton Coliseum. There are two shows today, Saturday, January 20 at 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm and one show on Sunday, January 21 at 1:00 pm
I am a girl who does NOT love trucks, noise or dirt, but I have a six-year-old grandson, Joe, who has been waiting all year for the Monster Jam to return to the Hampton Coliseum.
Joe was a little noise sensitive when he was younger. Hands over his ears when we were making a smoothie in the blender. He loved his first Monster Jam at age four, but he spent the entire show with his jacket over his ears like a babushka on a Polish grandma. It was my first Monster Jam too. I really enjoyed the show. Giant wheeled trucks climbing over big piles of dirt, almost, but not quite, flipping over. Little ATV’s racing around the floor of the Coliseum. We looked around the Coliseum and realized that lots of people brought ear protection for their kids. Lots of grown-up people were wearing ear protection too. We learned our lesson.
Joe begged to go to the next Monster Jam. This time we borrowed his older sister’s pink noise-cancelling earphones. They worked like a charm. Joe had a great time.
Ever since then, Joe thinks the Hampton Coliseum is the home of the Monster Jam trucks. We pass the distinctive origami diamonds of the Hampton Coliseum frequently on I 64 and EVERY SINGLE TIME, Joe wants to know if we can go on in and see the Monster Jam.
He’s in kindergarten now. They study the calendar a lot in kindergarten. He began to understand in September that he would have to wait until January to go to see the Monster Jam. He was patient, but he still reminded me each time we passed the Coliseum that the Monster Jam was coming in January.
We borrowed the pink headphones from his sister, brought earplugs for ourselves, and we were ready. This year, Joe understood the competition. There are seven events. Points are tallied for the grand prizewinner at the end of the evening. The Monster Jam folks have added a really fun, interactive feature. In three of the events, the audience can give the drivers a score on their smartphones. You have 20 seconds to vote, and the results are announced almost immediately. It felt a little like holding up a judge’s scorecard at a diving competition.
The six-year old understood the concept immediately. He could hardly wait to grab my phone and enter his score. He was a serious and fair judge. Joe did have a favorite, the hometown hero, Brandon Vinson. Brandon is based just across the border in North Carolina and drives Grave Digger.
I liked the women drivers. Collette Davis drove like a mad women in a truck called Wonder Women. Ami Houde was a fan favorite in the Zombie Truck. The Zombie has giant arms and fingers that wave around in front of the truck. The fans waved like zombies right back at her.
The best part of the night was the final, Freestyle event. Each driver has 75 seconds to drive, jump, crash and sometimes flip. Mark List drove El Toro Loco. He was El Toro Loco. He got that giant truck to “walk” backward on the rear tires without flipping over, roared down a hill and flew over the top of two cars that had seen better days.
My favorite part of the night was every time a truck would be airborne and seem to suspend in air. I held my breath and waited to see if the truck would land upright or upside down.
Joe’s favorite part of the night was the win by Brandon Vinson and his Grave Digger Truck. On the way out of the Hampton Coliseum, Joe asked if he could go back and see it again the next day and take his dad. “My Dad has never see the Monster Jam Nana, and he would really like it.” Next time Joe. I’m sure we will be coming back to the Monster Jam next year.
The Monster Jam Triple Threat Series is at the Hampton Coliseum through Sunday, January 21. For ticket information, go to here.