By Shawn Loughlin
This September, the Huron Pioneer Thresher and Hobby Association will be hosting its first in-person reunion in three years, bringing back one of Blyth’s most beloved events.
The reunion will return to the village on the weekend of Sept. 9-11, its traditional home, the weekend after Labour Day. Those involved are planning a return to a full-scale, in-person reunion after two years of cancellations and truncated events, such as tractor parades and a drive-through mini-reunion.
Association President Judy Sloan said that earlier this year people began calling members of the executive, curious about the status of the 2022 event. After meeting with the membership, Sloan said the group felt the time was right to move ahead with an in-person event and the group announced its plans to host a full-scale reunion in early March.
This September’s event will be the 61st annual reunion in the organization’s history. Last year marked the 60th anniversary, but because it was a truncated, drive-through event, the group wasn’t able to fully mark the milestone. This year, Sloan said, the group hopes to have a special guest or two to help celebrate the anniversary that the group couldn’t celebrate last year.
This year’s featured steam engine is a 1929 20-horsepower Waterloo owned by Bruce Shillinglaw of Londesborough. The featured antique tractor will be John Deere and the antique vehicle will be a 1931 Ford Model “A”.
There will be live demonstrations by steam engines, antique steam shovel, large saw mill, gas engines, threshing, rope making, blacksmiths, the bean pot and popcorn making, indoor and outdoor vendors, quilting and the full Lifestyles program.
The daily 4 p.m. parades will also return, as well as horse-drawn demon-strations and serviced camping.
The Stoneboat Pullers will be on hand on Friday at 7 p.m. for modified lawn mower pulls. Throughout the weekend there will also be an antique tractor pull (pre-1958), classic tractor pull (1958-1978) and a children’s stock antique garden tractor pull (pre-1978).
There will be log sawing, bag tying and belt setting, as well as a number of activities for children, including a petting zoo, miniature ponies, face painting, a pedal tractor pull, a lawn tractor rodeo and crafts.
On the musical side, there will be the annual fiddle and step dancing competitions, jam sessions, a free fiddle workshop, performances by the Brussels Legion Pipe Band and the Sunday church service. Travis and Kim Teed will perform for the Friday night dance and the Irish Cowboys will be on the stage on Saturday night. 377 Gypsy Lane, Blyth. www.blythsteamshow.com