Tractors ready to take center stage

Tractors are seen in 2018 riding up Water Street in South Haven during the annual tractor parade that is part of the Michigan Flywheelers Museum’s annual Antique Tractor and Engine Show. The show gets underway Thursday and continues through Sunday. The tractor parade begins at 4 p.m. Thursday at the museum. It will travel two miles to downtown South Haven where drivers will park, get a bite to eat and shop, and then return to the museum.

SOUTH HAVEN — A week after Labor Day it’s not unusual to see a steady stream of antique tractors heading down Phoenix Street toward Lake Michigan.

The parade is one of the more unique aspects of the Michigan Flywheelers Museum’s Antique Tractor and Engine Show, and it will return this year as part of the four-day show.

Touted as one of the largest shows of its kind in the state, the four-day event, Thursday-Sunday, Sept. 5-8, features displays of antique farm equipment, demonstrations at the sawmill, shingle mill and blacksmith shop, a large outdoor flea market, consignment auction, kids’ activities, tractor pulls and musical entertainment.

“We offer a wide variety of things to do and see,” said museum president Patrick Ingalls. “That’s what makes the show so interesting.”

Along with the displays of old farm machinery, there are daily parades, valve-cover races, a consignment auction and a large flea market.

“We have over 200 vendors selling everything you could possible imagine,” Ingalls said.

This year’s entertainment includes folk singer Joe Foster, the Casco Band, Ken and Judy Moore’s Jam Session, Silver Songs, Bronk Bros., hymn sings and singer Quentin Flagg. The Silver Songs show will take place on Thursday at 8:30 p.m. and is a benefit concert for Senior Services of Van Buren County.

Saturday is considered “Kids Day” at the show. Activities start with a Kiddies Pedal Pull at noon, a sawdust pile treasure hunt at 3:30 p.m. and the John Dudley Magic Show at 7 p.m. Tractor games will be held for those children who have access to riding lawn tractors, and returning again this year is the “Kids Night Time Lawn Tractor Cruise” on Friday and Saturday.

One of the popular activities for young and old is the “South Haven Tractor Cruise.” Scheduled for 4 p.m. Thursday, participants drive tractors of all makes and models from the museum grounds to downtown South Haven, cruise along the South Beach, and then park their vehicles for an evening of dining and shopping.

Gates open each day of the show at 8 a.m., rain or shine. Admission is $7. Children 12 and under are free with a paid adult admission. Thursday is Senior’s Day and admission is $3 for those 62 and older. The show is a pet-free event for those who pay admission.

For more information, contact 269-639-2010, michiganflywheelers@yahoo.com, or Facebook. A complete show schedule is available on Facebook or www.michiganflywheelers.org.

The Michigan Flywheelers Museum is located at 06285 68th St., two miles east of South Haven.