Steam Threshers roll in
By Fran Odyniec
If the Grand Parade of Tractors that wound through downtown Plain City on Friday evening, July 13 weren’t enough, close to 1,200 tractors were parked out in Pastime Park for the 63rd annual Miami Valley Steam Threshers Association Reunion.
One of the biggest events of the year in Plain City, the Steam Threshers show was expected to draw as many as 12,000 people this year.
A major reason is that this year’s show is designated as a national event for Allis Chalmers equipment and is the Gathering of the Orange Buckeye Allis Club.
“This one has been four years in the making,” said Mark Thompson, president of the Miami Valley Steam Threshers Association.
Thompson said that the national Allis Chalmers Association scrutinizes everything from the site, to hotels, and, most importantly, the legendary orange tractors and associated equipment.
“These are beautiful grounds, and the support that Plain City gives us makes a great statement,” he continued. “That’s what the national looks for.”
He added that the Buckeye Allis Club is very strong and well organized, which the national also considers.
Besides the legendary orange ACs and a few green ones, tractors from John Deere, Minneapolis Moline, Farmall, Oliver, International Harvester, and Cockshutt cover a lot of acreage at Pastime Park.
And there are the steam tractors from as far back as 1913.
“You can never replace steam,” Thompson continued, “because steam is almost like a living soul inside an engine Nothing replaces steam.”
For anyone who has never been to the Steam Threshers show, he promises a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Folks will see steam-operated saw mills, a veneer mill, and a shingle mill — all providing the sights and smells of what once was an everyday experience in the heartland.
Scores of booths offering everything from replacement parts to farm memorabilia to hand-crafted items as well as food and beverages fan out throughout the park.
Toss in a tractor pull at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday and one at 10 a.m. on Sunday, and there are more than a hay wagon full of reasons to take in the 63rd annual Miami Valley Steam Threshers Association Reunion at Pastime Park. Admission is $5; children 12 years of age and under with an adult are free.