IF YOU GO
* What: Monster Jam.
* When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 7-8.
* Where: UTC's McKenzie Arena, 724 E. Fourth St.
* Admission: $20 adults, $5 children; $30 Gold Circle; $45 front row.
* Phone: 423-266-6627.
* Website: www.tickettracks.com.
* Note: Passes for the Party in the Pits, 5-6:30 p.m. both nights, cost an extra $10.
Ed Eckert is all about cars and trucks. He fixes them for a living during the week and then spends his weekends smashing them to pieces with his own monster truck, affectionately known as Fullboar.
"Yeah, it's a lot of fun," said the Knoxville resident. "It's a great big adrenalin rush."
Eckert will return to Chattanooga on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 7-8, for the Monster Jam truck competition at McKenzie Arena. Fans will again get to take in the sights and sounds of the bright paint schemes, gigantic tires, loud engines and trucks with names like Aftershock, Obsessed, Pouncer and Rammunition.
Eckert said he was a fan for 14 years before deciding to get his own truck 13 years ago. While he said he enjoys competing against some of the guys he loved watching as a fan, the real thrill is watching the crowd.
"I was one of them, so to look into the crowd and see kids and grown-ups having a good time is great."
Eckert said he does about 20 events a year with Fullboar, and it is all on his dime.
"It's my hobby. I've raced in Israel, and I was one of the first to do that. It's just something I enjoy doing."
In addition to smashing cars, drivers compete against each other in doughnut, freestyle and wheelie competitions.
Contact Barry Courter at email@example.com or 423-757-6354.
Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...