{photojournal} Dixon Demolition Derby

For my birthday last year, I asked my friends and family to get tickets for a Demolition Derby in Dixon, CA, which is a small town about 75 miles east of San Francisco.

I will admit that after making this plan I realized that I actually didn’t even know what a Demolition Derby was– I mean, I guess I could have figured it out if I thought about, but I didn’t. I think that’s because I couldn’t have imagined how utterly fun and awesome it is to watch cars crash into each other. So now I know: more or less, a bunch of cars drive around in dirt crashing into each other, until only 1 car is able to move. Pretty straightforward.

Some things we learned:
1. You’re not allowed to hit the driver’s side door on purpose. Anywhere else is OK.
2. Drivers wear helmets and they only carry a small amount of gasoline to prevent fires.
3. If you’re driving in dirt, you don’t actually need tires or wheels- you can do pretty well even when you’re down to the axle.
4. Ideal demographic for DD is Y chromosome, age 3-10. Not to say the adults and females didn’t enjoy it, since everyone did LOVE it. But nothing matched the unbridled, nay, unhinged, enthusiasm of the little boys who were in our group.
5. If someone invites YOU to this type of event, you should definitely try to make it, because it’s pretty much insanely fun and awesome and different.

(These photos are about half mine, and half from my friend Carolyn Laub, who was kind enough to share.)

The DD was a special attraction of the Dixon May Fair. Previous night’s entertainment: ZZ Top.

The cars and trucks line up on the dirt to show themselves off before the crashtastic action starts.

The dollar bill car was an early favorite, until he was decommissioned by a busted radiator.

Try as he might, 68’s driver can’t resuscitate this victim.

Dead cars pile up on the berm while the remaining vehicles continue to smash around.

At the end, since only 1 car is still able to drive, heavy machinery carts the remaining carcasses off the dirt in preparation for the next round.

Mmm… delicious dancing corn dogs.

The pickup truck round about to begin. The announcer is so excited and keeps saying “in my 30 years of doing this, I have NEVER seen a pickup derby, so folks, this is really something special!” So special!

A truck smokes after a front hit and his radiator blows.

When a winner is declared, the drivers take off their helmets and climb out of their trashed trucks.

After 2 rounds, this incredibly tough car finally died- but not before driving around on 1 perpendicular tire, 1 diagonal tire, and 1 bare axle.

Exhaust combined with fire extinguisher blowback flooded the open-air arena with choking smoke.

The event came to an abrupt and unceremonius end when the smoke became so overwhelming and obscuring that patrons ran from the arena coughing and covering their faces.

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