Saturday, August 05, 2006

Great Oregon Steam-Up

One day while driving down I-5 between Salem, Oregon and nearby Woodburn, I spied an antique tractor in a field that bordered the interstate. I asked my brother-in-law Larry, who was along for the ride about it and he mentioned that the Antique Powerland Museum in Brooks held an exhibit of antique steam and gas powered farm equipment each year during the last part of July and early August. Being the connoisseur of culture that I am(!), I knew that I had to be there, so we made plans to attend.

I had no idea what to expect and if you've never seen an antique steam powered tractor, you're in for a treat. The first steam tractors were manufactured in 1868 and resembled small locomotives complete with smoke stack. These behemoths weighed thousands of pounds and lumbered along at speeds of up to 3 m.p.h. The tractors exhibited at the Great Oregon Steam-Up are all lovingly restored by their owners from around the country and brought to the outdoor museum to share their history with the public.

Tickets to the festival were $8 and children 12 and under got in for free. What an incredible value in my opinion, for a lifetime of memories that the entire family can share.

In addition to the exhibit and parade of tractors, other activities include tractor pulls, street car rides, wheat field threshing, baling and binding demonstrations and a huge flea market.

For more information, go to

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