How To Soften A TOUGH CUSTOMER


| April/May 1989



Root & Vandervoort engines

Bill Smith, Verbank, N. Y. relaxes with his Stover & John Deere (built by Root & Vandervoort engines)

Century Museum Village & Collectors, Association R. D. #1, Box 116, Wassaic, New York 12592

The fellow behind the wheel of the big Lincoln with a backseat full of squirming kids was less than cordial: 'Suppose we don't like the show, will you give our money back?' he demanded. Ticket taker Carol Boice took a deep breath and took the gamble. 'If you're not satisfied, we'll refund your money,' she assured the reluctant customer.

The event was Century Museum Village & Collectors Association's 12th Annual Antique Engine, Machinery and Crafts Festival, held last May 21-22 near Stanfordville, New York. With spectator attendance lower than usual due to the threat of rain, the club could ill afford any ticket refunds.

Inside the showgrounds, 'Mr. Lincoln' and kids were captivated by the children's tractor pulling contest. A weight sled, designed much like its full-sized counterparts, had been built by Milt Stickes and Clyde Shook at their homes in Hudson, New York, and the children were enthusiastically pumping a pedal tractor to see who could drag the weight sled the farthest. Cheered on by her brothers, 'Mr. Lincoln's' daughter won the contest, much to the delight of the now-beaming father. As the Lincoln pulled away two hours later amidst smiles, waves and shouts of 'See you next year,' Carol Boice let out a big sigh of relief!

That scenario is just one cameo glimpse of the fun and frolic of a memorable weekend. Right from the early-bird arrival of Don Williams from Lake Katrine, New York, with his flawlessly running Domestic sideshaft model to the departure of the clean-up crew late Sunday evening, it was a weekend not to be forgotten. Over 100 machinery collectors, 24 crafts demonstrations, 35 antique cars, 22 antique motorcycles and 32 antique/collectibles vendors made for a show of diversity and entire family interest.

Joe and George Henshaw came up again from Milford, New Jersey with several antique tractors and a 1924 Model T clown car. Joe cheerfully gave dozens of rides to kids, young and not so young, around the showgrounds.