Antique tractors featured

BLUE EARTH – The parade is so special it has drawn a radio and television personality all the way from Chicago.

The Antique Tractor Parade will begin at 5:15 p.m. Thursday at the Faribault County Fair, head down Main Street in Blue Earth and past St. Luke’s Care Center so the residents can see all the colorful tractors, said Larry Prange of Delavan, vice president of the Faribault County Historical Society.

The parade carries on a tradition that honors the county’s rich agricultural history.

Antique tractors began showing up at the fair about 15 years ago, Prange figured, and they’ve been multiplying ever since. This year, more than 90 are on display.

“Two, three years ago, we had 110,” Prange said.

“I haven’t heard of anybody bigger than us,” Prange said.

As far as he is concerned, the more tractors, the better.

“A lot of people have got old tractors and are getting to bring them to the fair and the fair board loves it,” Prange said.

The oldest one he could find on the fairgrounds was a 1928 Rumely oil pull W-20-30 owned by Lawrence Sickler of Winnebago.

Joel Hanson does sound for the fair. Hanson told the fair board it needed to contact Max Armstrong, an agriculture journalist with RFD-TV and WGN Radio and get him to broadcast from the fair.

Armstrong is flying in on Thursday to lead the parade, and Prange has one request to fill.

“He’s a Farmall man” and wants to be driving that red tractor, he said.

Armstrong and everyone else will have plenty to look at; in addition to the tractors, the Historical Society has an antique machine shed filled with all kinds of old things.

“Come out and look, you’ll be surprised, especially this building,” Prange promised. “You can spend two, three hours.”