To transform a beat-up white 1993 Ford Crown Victoria, 15 automotive students at the Eastern Suffolk BOCES H.B. Ward Career and Technical Center in Riverhead spent three weeks fixing dents, painting and adhering vinyl stickers and zombie designs to the exterior.
“When it came to us, it was quite the clunker,” said auto body instructor Brian La Barba, 39, of Patchogue. “But students used what they learned in auto body class to fix and design the car’s exterior so that it’ll be ready for the Monster Jam.”
On Friday, the students publicly unveiled their zombie-themed “crush car,” which will be displayed at the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam on June 15 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. during a pre-show pit party in the stadium parking lot. It will be crushed at a future show.
To celebrate the debut of the first zombie-themed monster truck, students were asked to work together to develop a design to showcase their school’s talent with a zombie flare.
Inspired by AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” student Dorian Barrios sketched multiple drawings of zombies by hand, then drew zombies all over the car.
“I did a few rough sketches, but I was told the zombies were too scary, so I toned it down to make them look more cartoonish,” said Barrios, 18, a junior at Riverhead High School.
Monster Jam provided the Riverhead school and a pair of New Jersey schools with a beat-up old car for the project, according to a Monster Jam representative.
At the monster truck series event, 50 crush cars, vans and buses will be scattered atop of 4,000 tons of dirt to create a racing track and obstacle course throughout MetLife Stadium.
A fleet of 16 of the most popular Monster Jam trucks, including Grave Digger, Monster Mutt, Madusa, Iron Man, Firestorm, Mohawk Warrior and El Toro Loco, will battle in racing and freestyle competitions with high-flying jumps, wheelies and donuts.
The last time Kody Wise, a senior at Eastport South Manor High School, had been to a monster truck show was when he was 8, so he’s thrilled to be able to get free tickets to this one.
“After all the work we put into it, I’m excited to see it displayed,” said Wise, 19, of Manorville. “And I’m really excited to see the famous Grave Digger monster truck, but who isn’t?”