We can't say enough about Drop Zone this year. The show has been so good the last couple years that there was a south-to-north cruise put together by Domination the Video. Being the crazy mini-truckers that we are - we just got done driving to Texas Heatwave two days before DZ - away we went on the cruise.

The initial leg of our cruise started at IF Customs in Sylmar, California, where we were greeted by ESPN, which was filming its new show "Truckstop." The beginning of the cruise consisted of mini truckers from SoCal, Arizona, and Las Vegas, including Domination, Down II Earth, Freaks of Nature, Perfect Poise, Severed Ties, and Surface DVD. ESPN hooked it up with some interviews and driving shots and away we went.

Off the bat, the freeways were more congested than The Marlboro Man. The I-5 had been shut down smack in the middle of our straight shot. The only good part about traffic is cruising about 1/4 inch off the ground and letting onlookers hit their heads on their windows trying to get a closer look. Through careful mapping and navigation we traversed over and hit-up another freeway that would get us to the promised land.

Thankfully past our traffic issues, we met up with more die-hard mini-truckers in Bakersfield as well as Lodi. The crews from the Nor Cal council, including Characters, Dangerous Toys, Freaks of Nature Nor Cal, Sinners, Street Sweepers, and Twisted Images, were out in full effect. We cruised to our hearts' content until we hit Redding, California, our first official hotel party - what's sleep when you have kegs in the back of the truck?!

Somehow Friday morning came and everyone was up and ready to go - except us. We caught a few extra z's because we dropped in some 92 octane the night before, so we knew catching up would be no problem. We caught the cruise with no problems, but that wasn't the last of our worries. Fifty miles from Salem, Oregon, the site of Drop Zone, we popped a 22-inch tire that lost the battle with a Godzilla-sized piece of retread. Knowing that Les Schwab was the tire place up North, we made a phone call and had a new 22-inch tire to go cruising with. You can't drive for 14 hours and then go in rolling stocks on the front.

As chance would have it, Drop Zone '05 surprised the living daylights out of us. Not only was the show way bigger than we anticipated, but it was very well organized, and the crew's attitude was second to none. This being the seventh year for the show as well as the fifth year as a three-day event, Magical Minis knows what it takes to make a show run smoothly. The overall feel of the show was very laid-back, and its participants were glad just to be there to have a good time. There was a hefty crop of Canadians out this year. The Canucks have been turning out some pretty clean minis lately, eh?

There were 576 vehicles registered for the show and 3,000 spectators, with plenty to drool over. Tattoos were being done on site by Hot Rod Betties, if you had a moment of inspiration at the show. There was a make-shift Slip 'n' Slide, with people pushing themselves to the limit, like they did when they were kids. A couple even chose to take their vows in the garden behind the buildings at Drop Zone. Congratulations to Erik and Eileen Frazier of Negative Behavior, and mad props to the Nissan dragging wedding paraphernalia along with the truck.

Saturday night was host to the infamous Drop Zone lack-of-wet-T-shirt contest. The ladies shook their rumps to the fresh beats provided by Galen, the DJ for the weekend. One of the lucky ladies left $740 richer and with a few notches up on her self-esteem totem pole.

Best of Show Mini and the Club Choice billet KAIK trophy went to Shawn Altermott of Sittin Pretty with his freshly revamped Mazda, the Lowest Club went to Altered States, Freaks of Nature won Club Participation, and Severed Ties won the Club Spirit trophy. Long Distance was a bit of a mix-up, but it ended up going to Oliver from Arizona and Domination the Video. Perfect Poise from Arizona took home Long Distance club honors as well as the How Many Times You Can Pass Us On The Way Home award. Magical Minis would like to thank everyone who attended as well as Hear No Evil Stereo, IF Customs, Innovative Air Suspension, and Les Schwab Tire for their continued support. For information on 2006's show, check out www.magicalminis.com.

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