The Missouri State Fairgrounds will once again see a parade today. Yes, the Clydesdales will make another parade appearance, but the parade at 2 p.m. features a different kind of horse power.
The Old and Wow Tractor and Equipment Show and Parade will feature 100 makes and models of tractors spanning the decades.
“We don’t limit the show to restored tractors,” Sandra Cornine said. “The new ones are welcome too.”
In its fourth year, the show continues to get bigger and bigger, according to event organizers.
“We grow a little bit each year,” Miles Wolfe, superintendent for the show, said. “We try to have something for everyone and we’re grateful to Jeff Tucker of Crown Power and Equipment who sponsors us each year and makes it possible for people to see all of this.”
Not only are tractors on display, but there are other pieces of farm equipment as well.
The oldest piece of machinery in the exhibit is a 1913 John Smythe Waterloo Contract Engine owned by Larry Lake, of Sedalia.
“I have restored all of these myself,” Lake said of the five engines he had with him on display. “I get them wherever I can find them, but they are getting hard to find.
“I guess time changes everything,” he added.
For Ron Gann, of Odessa, time has changed many things, but not the 1957 Farmall 350 he lovingly restored to its original condition, in memory of his parents Orvil and Marie Gann.
“My dad bought the tractor brand new,” Gann said. “He used it a lot.”
Gann’s father died in 1999, but before he did, his son remembered a phone call he got from his mother.
“One day mom called and said I need to come up to the barn,” Gann recalled. “She said there was a problem with Dad and the tractor.
“I asked her what the matter was, and if the tractor wouldn’t start,” Gann continued. “She said, ‘No, it will, but your father can’t get on it to start it.’”
As the skies looked like rain Tuesday morning, Gann added that since he had completed the restoration of the tractor, it had only been out in the rain two or three times at most.
“I keep her protected,” Gann said. “She means a lot to me.”
Gann’s tractor and those belonging to others throughout the state are on display outside the Mathewson Exhibition Center on the Missouri State Fairgrounds through 4 p.m. today.
The show opens at 9 a.m. today with tractor games, including tractor basketball and the barrel push at 10 a.m. The tractor parade through the fairgrounds begins at 2 p.m.
Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484