We're not talking about the siege of Fort Sumter, although the late-night activities of the Highway Invasion Tour certainly ignited their own brand of fireworks. The five-city swing through the Southeast, beginning with Charleston, South Carolina, was a peaceful invasion, even though the two-day show took the town by storm. Enthusiastic truckers gathered at the Ladson Exchange Park for a weekend of old-fashion, hell-raisin' fun.
Although this was the Highway Invasion crew's first visit to Charleston, they are well-versed as show promoters with many years of experience. The family and friends that make up Drop Jaw Promotions host half a dozen big-name shows throughout the year for East Coast truckers like the legendary Big Show in Richmond Motorsports Park, the Freak Show in Kinston, North Carolina, Evolution in Fayetteville, North Carolina, and more. Taking their particular brand of entertainment on the road is something new to the crew, but if the Charleston crowd is any indication, they can expect a warm reception at future tour stops. Show promoters Mike and Glenn Pilgreen are assisted by a motivated group of enthusiasts who have been active in the lifestyle since 1990. Drawing on those years of experience, the promotional team ensures that showgoers enjoy a guaranteed good time with everything they expect from a truck show and more.
The collection of vehicles, displayed around the lake in beautiful Ladson Exchange Park on the outskirts of Charleston, was the main attraction, although there were lots of other pleasant diversions such as accessory vendors, photographers offering shots of your truck, food concessions, magazine crews, and live entertainment. The fairground has about a half-mile loop around the lake, perfect for a leisurely stroll to check out the latest in automotive trends.
Family oriented activities during the day gave way to a different brand of entertainment that night. When the sun goes down, put the little ones to bed, and get ready for some strictly adult entertainment. Drop Jaw's legendary, late-night parties have a huge East Coast fan base, and now Charleston truckers know why. Local music groups warmed up the crowd, but when the sun went down and the stage lights came up, the silhouette of a beautiful dancer appeared on the curtain, giving the crowd an indicator of things to come.
Rapstar Akineyle teamed up with Drop Jaw's own rap celebrity, Mike Pilgreen, as the curtain opened to reveal a pair of smokin'-hot customs on stage along with a pair of equally hot chicks doing their thing on dancing platforms. Music from Matt Jones' Carolina Entertainment got the girls and the crowd motivated. The bikini contest and wet T-shirt contest heated things up even more, with the girls working hard to earn some cash. The competition was tough and temperatures soared, but gorgeous Nicole took home the $500 prize. The afterparty continued the fun till the wee hours of the morning.
Guys had opportunities to score some cash as well. The Sunday morning Hydro Demo saw serious hydraulic and air action, with the switchmen putting on a quality show for the cheering crowd. Two of the trucks were within a degree or two of rolling over. Davey, from Above Reality, captured the winner-take-all, $500 prize. Once the flames and hydraulic spills were contained, the combination of noise, smoke, and rubber dust was next on the agenda, as the burn-out contestants fired up their motors and the fans. Charleston truckers came prepared, rolling in with high-horsepower rides capable of disintegrating tires at will. Kevin did it best in his big-block Chevy C10, pocketing $200 for his efforts. From smoking tires to twangy guitars, the crowd shifted its attention to the hard-rockin' sounds of Quench on the main stage. It was the perfect lead in to the awards ceremony, where more than 125 drivers added a Drop Jaw trophy to their collection. Check out the details about the rest of the Highway Invasion tour on www.dropjawmag.com. This is entertainment you won't want to miss.