For its 29th year, the Empire Threshing Association thresheree drew one of its largest crowds ever for the event.
It was staged on Saturday, Aug. 29 at the John Wettstein farm in eastern Fond du Lac County - on the last pleasant day before the onset of a period of hot and humid weather.
A multitude of attractions drew interest from attendees throughout the day. Hundreds of restored antique tractors and other equipment representing many manufacturers and demonstrations of some of the equipment served as the centerpieces of the thresheree.
For many of the attendees, watching that equipment in operation was a stroll on memory lane. For the younger portion of the crowd, the seeing some of the equipment in use was a new experience.
In the late morning, loads of oats bundles were run through a thresher powered by a 1906 Case steam engine. A bit later, the pile of oats straw was pitched into John Deere and Case balers using wire to make the ties.
With the use of Ford and Ferguson tractors, a binder cut corn stalks and bundled them before they were run through a feed cutter/chopper and blown in a snow fence silo. Standing grain was cut with a restored Daisy Reaper.
Other vintage implements which were demonstrated were a Gehl self-propelled chopper for chopping corn and a 1930s era International Green Crop hayloader for picking up dry hay. Steam engines, tractors, and teams of horses pulled plows across a hillside field.
An event that is as popular with the competitors as it is with the spectators is the children's pedal tractor pull. At the thresheree here and similar events elsewhere, it attracts dozens to the pulling track and sometimes a hundred or more observers to the bleachers and adjacent viewing spots.
Hit and Miss engines were displayed, blacksmithing was demonstrated, and dyno testing was conducted. Raffles were conducted for a hog ready to be butchered and for a toy tractor.
The food and refreshment tent was another popular place throughout the day. Food and beverages were sold by the Campbellsport FFA Alumni chapter while ice cream from Kelley's Country Creamery near Byron was sold by the Taft-23 4-H Club.