43138 Road 52 Reedley, California 93654
Sunny skies and warm temperatures prevailed at Lindy's Landing along the beautiful banks of the Kings River near Reedley, California on May 16 & 17, 1992 where Branch 8 of the Early Day Gas Engine & Tractor Association observed their 12th annual Crank Up Show. The showgrounds were well groomed with plenty of green grass, well marked trails, plus plenty of shade.
Weeks of advance planning and preparation had taken place prior to show dates in order that all details would fall into place. Show director John Boyajian had arranged for the many details necessary for a successful show.
Approximately 45-50 registered exhibitors brought their old iron and expensive toys for exhibition. They began to arrive several days before the show and camped on the grounds in preparation for the days of fun and enjoyment. Dick and Holly Wilson received the honor of coming the farthest distance and brought their Gray engine with a water pumping demonstration. Mark Alge, of Buena Park (Los Angeles area), arrived several days early so he could set up under his favorite shade tree. He exhibited a 1902 Frisco Standard Marine engine, which is considered to be very rare. Mark asked that his name be mentioned so he could prove to his wife that he actually attended an engine show, for she (who did not come along) could not believe that anyone would travel 200 miles and sit for three days beside an old engine and enjoy it.
There were a number of engines displayed, including two large engines which drew much attention: Boyajian brothers displayed their 30 HP Superior which always makes a hit wherever it is shown, as well as several other smaller engines which they exhibited. Don and Peggy Peterson displayed their larger 1913, 25 HP Sheffield engine, which drew much attention as it produced a loud exhaust and smoke rings, which everyone enjoys. In addition, there were numerous other smaller engines displayed by Floyd and Ken Schmall, Menno and Ann Kliewer, Bill and Stacy Paloutzian, David and Belle Kope, Don and William Bennett, Jake and Esther Golbek, John Shipley, and others of whom I do not have a record.
The tractor exhibition was glamorous and well represented, with John Deere seeming predominant, although we did have Case, Ford, Oliver, Waterloo Boy and several crawlers as well. These tractor men had a heyday as they drove their tractors around the showgrounds and trails doing fancy skilled driving, just like a boy playing with his toy tractors, although they kept the safety factor in mind at all times. The more conservative drivers, like myself, offered free rides to the kids, who enjoyed it very much, as the passenger waiting line became longer instead of shorter. For a youngster to take hold of a steering wheel, while the tractor is. moving, gives him great joy and delight. Whenever the tractor derby seemed to calm down, the organized tractor skilled events started to take place under strict supervision. There were slow races, fast races, slow reverse races, and general skilled performances. Visitors learned that it is much more difficult to have a tractor perform in a slow race than in a fast race, for in a slow race the delicate and skilled performance of the tractor engine and driver/owner is tested. Again, here all safety factors were emphasized. Members who exhibited tractors were: Jeff Golbek, Menno Kliewer, Steve Vogt, Doug Peltzer, Robbie Soults, Cal Middleton, and Joel Kroeker. My apology to anyone who has been omitted.
While all these events were taking place throughout the day, Stacy Paloutzian and her associates were busy tending to the sale of items at the store. These ladies' services are greatly appreciated, and add to the success of the show. Not to be overlooked was the presentation of our 1? HP John Deere raffle engine prepared and restored by one of our faithful members, Jeff John, who also was busy selling raffle tickets.
Little Jacob Vogt, 6 years old, our youngest Branch 8 member, was full of action with his Case pedal tractor right beside his dad's 1936 Case tractor, and observing with great enthusiasm all the events that his dad entered, anticipating the day when he, too, could lay aside his pedal tractor and join the grownups.
Special recognition was given young Jacob at the business meeting later in the evening. At 5:00 p.m. Saturday all members stopped their engines and met for a barbecue steak dinner which was highlighted with laughter and story telling. Thereafter President Floyd Schmall took command and called for a business meeting where current business matters, election of National Officers, and future show schedules were enacted.
The show continued on Sunday with another crowd of exhibitors and visitors. At noon the Central Valley Horseless Carriage Club (with members throughout California) entered our showgrounds, as had previously been arranged for, with about 50-60 antique automobiles of every make and model known. This was an educational show in itself and at 1:00 p.m. joint members who were interested and hungry met for another barbecue steak dinner. This gave all joint members an opportunity to make new friends and renew old friendships.
The closing of a show brings about those moments when everyone packs up for that long journey home, but before they leave, they say goodbye or farewell to other Branch members and agree to look forward to next year, when we plan to observe our 13th annual show, in May of 1993.