Cart Attack

Last fall, eccentric Pennsylvanian gearhead Cal VanSant grabbed his 15 nanoseconds of Internet fame when photos were posted online of a souped-up shopping cart-shaped hot rod he spent two years constructing. Dubbed the “Shopper Chopper,” the nine-foot motorized monstrosity boasts substantially more muscle and macho than those wobbly carts down at the neighborhood Safeway.

Despite all its ingenuity, VanSant’s creation is kinda dull compared to the imaginative and bizarrely eye-catching carts pushed around by participants in this year’s Phoenix Idiotarod on Saturday, February 9. While the “Shopper Chopper” features neon lights and other bells and whistles, it’s not nearly as amusing as the stol…er, repurposed grocery transports transformed into the Channel 4 news van from Anchorman or the Trojan Rabbit from Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Such are the sort of participants that make up the field at Arizona Cacophony Society's annual shopping cart race. More than three dozen themed teams of five participants each will do battle during this year’s event (including squads inspired by South Park, local Internet sensation Grumpy Cat, and Magic Mike).

Sat., Feb. 9, 1 p.m., 2013
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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.