WAUSEON — The National Threshers Association is celebrating its 75th reunion this weekend at the Fulton County Fairgrounds.
With events planned for Thursday through Sunday, the annual reunion, which has received commendations from the Ohio governor and the Ohio Senate, will feature Port Huron steam engines and threshing machines as those were the first engines used at the reunion by founder Leroy Blaker. Also featured are Caterpillar and Novo gas engines.
“We are honored and proud that we are able to continue a tradition that endures and hold the vision and high standards set for one of the best steam shows in the world,” said Dennis Rupert, president of the National Threshers Association.
According to the association, the first gathering took place June 30, 1945, at Blaker’s farm outside of Alvordton and his Port Huron steam engines were in use at that initial event, which was attended by 300 people. The show moved to Montpelier in 1953 and then to Wauseon in 1965.
Rupert reflected the reunion has grown over the years and now showcases approximately 50 engines. Camping was not available during the first years of the reunion, but now nearly 500 campers stay for the weekend. The four-day event now averages more than 10,000 spectators and 500 tractors on display.
Rupert encouraged the public to stop by the event “to see the equipment operating as it did 100 years ago, equipment that began the industrial revolution,” as well as flea markets and “fair” foods.
Daily admission is $5, and kids under 12 are free with an adult admission. National Threshers Association membership are available for $10. Parking is free.
The Fulton County Fairgrounds are located in Wauseon along State Route 108 at the Ohio Turnpike exit 34.