James Valley Threshing Show this weekend

Farm Forum

The efforts of volunteers through the past 40 years will be recognized at the James Valley Threshing Show this weekend, Sept. 5-7. The event starts at 7 a.m. Friday with breakfast at the Feed Bin at the Threshermen’s Park at Andover.

Donna Anderson, one of the organizers, said many of the volunteers dedicated to helping at the event are in their 80s or 90s. The various locations at the church, schoolhouse and toy chest give the many individuals a chance to share their knowledge of the “old days” with young people.

“We are so excited,” Anderson said. “We’ve built the show and bring new things each year. This year, my husband Kevin will be giving rides in the Stanley Steamer. The North Highland Church in Aberdeen has been donated to us, and we have that on location as the Thresherman’s Park Church. The Minneapolis Moline tractors will be featured this year. The steam plowing always draws a lot of interest.”

The Village includes a genuine pioneer one-room schoolhouse and a small church relocated from their original hometowns. Visitors can see the sawmill in action and visit a vintage gas station, a John Deere store and other interesting buildings.

In addition to the JVT crew, lots of volunteers are needed to steam up the 20 steam engines, tractors and cars for the weekend. Anderson said that 25 couples from the Rollag, Minn., steam threshing group will assist.

Talking about the restoration of the Stanley Steamer and giving rides pumps the adrenaline of Donna’s husband Kevin. The vehicle has traveled to many area events, giving people a chance to ride in the kerosene fueled car from the 1920s.

The Heritage Craft program will be at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday. That will also be the time for the Antique Tractor Pull.

“It is a great way to show young kids where agriculture started,” Anderson said. “By knowing our past, it helps direct our future. We didn’t always have cell phones. Here people are reminded of life with horses and steam cars and how things have progressed. Tractors didn’t always have air conditioning.”

There’s old fashioned cooking offered at the Feed Bin and many other concessions on the grounds.

The Andersons are working on restoring at the 150 HP Case Road Locomotive. Anderson said the boiler will be on display. The family hopes to have it completed by 2016.

Watch the webpage www.jamesvalleythreshers.com for updates throughout the year. The event is presented by the James Valley Threshers Association and Two Cylinder Club.

James Valley Threshing 40th Anniversary Book

This book tells the stories of members of the James Valley Threshers to celebrate the group’s 40th anniversary. It also shares the history of life in the region. The activities of farming in the early 1900s such as threshing, plowing, lumber sawing, shaped the world in rural America. By restoring antique steam engines, tractors, trucks, cars and other farming equipment, this heritage is preserved. Members share by learning and demonstrating the skills used to operate these relics of the past.

The book also tells of early family life on the farm, when church worship and the old school house were the cultural centers, and heritage crafts such as quilting, spinning, weaving and food preparation were how a family’s needs were met. It also details the pastimes that entertained, from children’s toys to the music and dance that provided evening relaxation and weekend merriment.

The cover of the book is graced with a Terry Redlin print called “Building a Community.” Terry was inspired to paint this picture when he attended a James Valley Threshing Show, and saw how the old sawmills were instrumental in building the early communities.

Schedule of events:

Friday, Sept 5 – Free admission to Nursing Home Residents!

7 – 9 a.m. Breakfast at the Feed Bin

11 a.m. -1:30 p.m. Lunch at the Feed Bin and concessions

1:30 p.m. Parade

2:30 p.m. Threshing and Lumber Sawing

3 p.m. Steam and Gas Plowing

Saturday, Sept. 6

7 – 9 a.m. Thresherman’s Breakfast

10:30 a.m. Heritage Craft Program

10:30 a.m. Antique Tractor Pull and Lumber Sawing

11 a.m. -1 p.m. Dinner at the Feed Bin and concessions

1:30 p.m. Parade

After the Parade, free watermelon feast, presented by Wells Fargo

2:30 p.m. Kid’s Pedal Tractor Pull

Steam and Gas Tractor Threshing

3 p.m. Steam and Gas Tractor Plowing

Dusk Spark Show

Sunday, Sept. 7

7:30 – 9 a.m. Thresherman’s Breakfast

9:30 a.m. Church Services at the Threshermen’s Park Church

11 a.m. -1 p.m. Dinner at the Feed Bin and concessions

1:30 p.m. Parade

After the Parade: Lumber Sawing

Carl Johnson Free Tractor Drawing

2:30 p.m. Steam and Gas Tractor Plowing

3 p.m. Steam and Gas Tractor Plowing

Each day

Antique Tractor and Truck Show on the Show Ground

Car Show in the Vintage Cars Building

Quilt Show in the Heritage Crafts Building

Themed Displays and Antiques Displays in the Heritage Crafts Building

Spinning and Weaving in the Weavers Building

Toy and Doll Show in the Toy Chest

Flea Market on the Flea Market Show Field

Blacksmith Shop Activities

Machine Demonstrations at the Machine Building

Carl Johnson Memorial Tractor Sign-up

Children’s Playground

Musical Entertainment


People Movers Tours of Park Grounds