Tractor ride to wind through Shelburne’s back roads

  • AJ Egloff leads a caravan of tractors on Brattleboro Road in Leyden as part of a weekend gathering of the tractor community in 2017. On Saturday, residents will participate in a 25-mile tractor ride in Shelburne as a fundraiser for the Franklin County Farm Bureau. STAFF File Photo/DAN LITTLE

Published: 10/17/2019 7:21:44 PM

SHELBURNE — The theme for the fundraiser that the Franklin County Farm Bureau will host Saturday is simple: BYOT, or bring your own tractor.

The fourth annual tractor ride kicks off at 9:30 a.m. and will be a 25-mile ride, followed by a pig roast.

“It’s going to start at Foxbard Farm on Saturday morning, then take a ride through the hills of Shelburne,” said Regina Grover, the secretary and treasurer for the farm bureau.

“Once the tractor riders get back, there’ll be a free pig roast for everyone who is there and for families and friends,” Grover said, adding that community members are welcome to the pig roast, if they do not have their own tractors to ride.

Tractor riders pay a donation of $25 to ride their tractor and the bureau will gladly accept donations from those coming only for the pig roast, she said.

“The last few years, we’ve had about 20, 25 tractors start from (Foxbard) farm. They’ll just kind of parade through and do their route,” which often lasts three hours, she said, traveling through multiple Franklin County towns.

For a casual bystander, it’s quite the sensory experience, Grover said.

“To hear the rumble of them head down the road,” she said. “It’s a cool sight to see.”

Grover said her favorite part is to be “able to watch all of these guys and some ladies who are really passionate about farming and agriculture, who have a lot of pride in the tractors that they bring out.”

All tractors are welcome to ride, said Foxbard Farm manager and tractor route organizer Kurt Benson. There’s only one caveat:

“As long as they can maintain 12 miles an hour,” Benson said, the tractor is welcome. “Old ones, new ones, it doesn’t matter.”

Benson said the ride emphasizes safety and, in case something goes wrong, there will be a tow truck on hand.

This year’s route, which includes about 20 different turns, will mainly take place on back roads, Benson said, and a half-way stop is planned for tractor riders to stretch their legs and grab coffee.

The route starts at Foxbard Farm at 400 Bardwells Ferry Road in Shelburne, with tractors heading toward Greenfield down Zerah Fiske Road, turning right onto South Shelburne Road, another right onto Old Albany Road and another right to head south down Upper Road. The route will continue into Deerfield onto Stillwater Road, Lee Road and Conway Road (Route 116), and will continue well into Conway. The coffee break will be held OESCO Inc. at 8 Ashfield Road in Conway.

Reach Maureen O’Reilly at moreilly@recorder.com and 413-772-0261, ext. 280.




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