OGDEN -- The 4th of July just isn't complete for Sandy Mirza without a demolition derby and fireworks.
That's why the Ogden resident has brought her two children to the Hot Rock'n 4th celebration for the past eight years.
"It's just fun to watch the cars crash up," Mirza said. "And the fireworks is one of the best I've ever seen."
Mirza arrived early Saturday afternoon so she could put denim quilt on the bleachers to reserve her spot, like so many of the other several hundred blankets scattered throughout the Ogden Stadium were doing.
"I'm just grateful it's only in the 80s," she said.
She wasn't the only one waiting for the derby to start.
Brian and Stephanie Oberg of North Ogden also arrived early with their two children. While their children played on the playground, they danced to the band Imagine: Remembering the Fab Four.
"We're just killing time until the derby," Brian Oberg said.
This was the second time he has been to a demolition derby. Stephanie brought him last year when they were dating.
"I was surprised he had never been to one," Stephanie said.
The derby attracted almost 60 drivers from all over the western region, said Steve "Scooby" Carroll of Layton, one of the derby officials. He inspected derby cars to make sure they were within the rules. Only a half-dozen drivers were from Utah.
Chris Johnston, Dale Schafer and Kevin Turner, all of Anaconda, Mont., have come to Ogden for the past four years to drive in the derby.
"It's the big crowds that bring us," Johnston said. "You make a big crash and you can hear them clapping and screaming. It gets you all jacked up."
"This is just one of the best shows to ride in," Schafer said.
It was the second time for Ben Conrad of Elko, Nev., to participate in Ogden's derby.
"It's the adrenaline rush," Conrad said about why he likes to crash cars.
While the derby drivers got their vehicles ready, magicians, jugglers, clowns and musicians kept the growing crowd entertained for the five hours between the gates opening and the derby beginning.
Roy McKenna, of West Jordan, created one balloon creation after another for young children.
"The best part are the smiles," McKenna said.
Jon Clark donned a silver bike helmet, then put plastic flowers inside a toaster, put the toaster on top of a mop head, then balanced the mop handle on his chin.
"That's awesome," said one little girl before dashing to an inflatable slide.
Marcus the Funny Man, also known as Marcus Wilson, juggled balls and other objects and performed yo-yo tricks.
"I just like to have fun," he said.