Earl Sparks Exhibit

Earl Sparks exhibit.

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Before a year passes, we wish to include the report of Helen Ament, our office manager, to the Pioneer Park Days celebration last March at Zolfo Springs, Florida.

Helen and her husband, Jim, brought supplies to our representative, Mrs. Elmer Schaeffer, and also visited with the Florida Flywheelers and the sponsor, First National Bank of Wachula, Florida.

Jim Gabbard of the bank pleasantly reprimanded Helen for dropping the name of the sponsor in the ad in the January-February 1979 GEM, but then forgave her and introduced the Aments to Tom Underwood, bank president.

The day before the meet, the park was sparsely occupied, but on opening day there were rows and rows of engines, hitting and missing, putting relentlessly, running smoothly and deliberately. B. Z. Cashman, of Lakeland, president of the Florida Flywheelers, gave his welcome.

An interesting display was that of Frank Christison, the anvilman, who was there with his family from West Palm Beach. He was showing anvils, of course, and also his two Starr engines with serial numbers only 12 digits apart. Gerald Jones, Watseka, Illinois, came up to chat.

'One exhibit that kept catching our eye,' Helen reports, 'was a trailer with several beautifully restored and colorful engines. Seeing a rare opportunity-no other viewers nearby-we approached the display and asked to take pictures. We were told 'Why not?' since they had been photographed from one coast to the other. The owner was Earl Sparks of St. Petersburg, on hand with eight engines on the trailer plus a single stunning display of a casting model. The restored engines were a 1911 Airmotor, 1906 Olds, W.I. Briggs & Stratton, 1923 Maytag single cylinder, Waterloo, 1928 two cylinder Maytag, Briggs & Stratton FH model, and a 1928 Delco light plant, 6V 150W with electric start.

Add steam engines, antique automobiles, a flea market and happy exhibitors and visitors, and you get the total picture of Pioneer Park Days.