The World’s Greatest Tractor Parade set a Guinness world record in 2008
By Diego Flammini
An Ontario community is organizing a parade to celebrate a milestone it reached a decade ago.
Stirling, Ont., will host the tenth anniversary of the World’s Greatest Tractor Parade on Aug. 25. In 2008, 601 tractors drove through the community during its 150th anniversary celebrations to set the Guinness world record for the largest parade of tractors.
A flat tire on one tractor prevented the number from being 602.
The anniversary parade serves different purposes.
The event helps the community get to know the local farmers who contribute to every meal, said Darrin Heasman, a farmer, police officer and co-chair of the World’s Greatest Tractor Committee.
“Everyone who was in the original parade is 10 years older,” he told Farms.com today. “It’s an opportunity to celebrate the farming community through a celebration of a piece of equipment farmers use to make a living, support their families and feed the world.”
The World’s Greatest Tractor Parade also helps tell the story of the tractor’s evolution.
Participants are driving vintage machines all the way to modern-day equipment, showing spectators how far agriculture has come.
“They see such a range of technology from an old Case tractor up to the John Deere 8000 series,” Heasman said. “Some of the great big ones make less noise than the old 40-horsepower models, and it’s amazing to see it all in one day.”
Tractor enthusiasts who want to get a closer look at some of the machines will have the chance to do so.
Every tractor in the parade will be parked at the Stirling Fairgrounds to allow people to learn more.
“The farmers will be on hand to answer questions about their tractors and how they use them,” Heasman said. “I’m sure it will be a big hit for the whole family.”
Registration is still open for any interested producers.
Farmers can fill out registration forms at local tractor dealerships in the Quinte, Ont. area or by visiting the event’s Facebook page.
More than 100 farmers have already registered and there are “hundreds of more registrations” to go through, Heasman said.
“Leading up to the event, there’s more registrations coming in,” he said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we exceed our previous total of 601 tractors.”
Heasman thanked farmers for their participation in the parade.
“I know it costs money to move the tractor from the farm, into town and back again,” he said. “I also know that many farmers are busy at this time of year, so for them to take a few hours to celebrate tractors, agriculture and the community is wonderful.”
A parade of Canadian tractors broke the original world record two years after the World’s Greatest Tractor Parade set it.
The Canadian Cancer Society in Dresden, Ont., set a new record in 2010 with a parade of 1,231 tractors.
Top photo: World's Greatest Tractor Parade/Facebook