You’ve heard of Monster Jam and plenty of families attend these shows, but what is it really like to be up close by these huge trucks? What do you need to bring to make sure the kiddies have a good time? We attended the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam show at Nassau Coliseum and got the scoop.
As part of Feld Entertainment, the world’s largest producer of live family entertainment, Monster Jam’s tour features some of the most popular monster trucks on the circuit. We saw favorites like Grave Digger, Monster Mutt, Advanced Auto Parts Grinder, Aftershock, Bounty Hunter, Storm Damage, Scarlet Bandit and El Toro Loco.
Long Island Mamas had the opportunity to meet with Becky McDonough who drives El Toro Loco and was one of two female drivers at the event (Scarlet Bandit was the other female-driven truck). McDonough, age 25, said she knew from a young age that she wanted to drive a Monster truck and noted how everyone said she couldn’t do it. McDonough kept her dream in sight and proved her naysayers wrong. She is now one of the most recognizable drivers on the circuit.
After the meet ‘n greet with McDonough, we attended the Pit Party where participants could take pictures with the drivers and get up close to the trucks. The family-friendly event included a clown who made animal shapes out of balloons and plenty of Monster Jam souvenirs for kids to choose from.
The two hour show featured contests like the “pop-a-wheelie,” “donuts” and “freestyle” competition. Judges scored the trucks’ performances and handed out awards. The show also included BMX professional bikers and motocross riders who performed amazing gravity-defying feats with ramps. The audience, consisting primarily of families, loved the exciting action.
From a parent’s perspective, make sure to prep before going. The roars from the trucks’ souped-up engines are very, very loud (we don’t recommend bringing children who don’t like loud noises). Bring earplugs or headphones. We know parents who make their kids wear both. If you forget to bring these, there are vendors on the premises who are selling headphones in the shape of truck tire ear covers.
Dress warmly as the doors are left open to help air out the fumes from the trucks (we could see our breath while sitting in our seats – it was super cold last night). Try to feed the kids beforehand — as with most entertainment venues, Security does not allow people to bring in their own food and drinks, and the vendor food prices within the venue are escalated.
Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam, the most popular Monster Truck show in the world, will be at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale from January 25-27 and at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford from February 1-2.
This four-wheeled event features thrilling and exciting freestyle driving that is affordably priced for the whole family-with seats starting at $15 for kids and $30 for adults. Tickets can be purchased at the Coliseum Box Office and by visiting www.Ticketmaster.com or calling 1-800-745-3000.
Post and photos by Maria Adcock