APACHE — Tractor enthusiasts from across southwest Oklahoma will be able to see some antique machinery this weekend as Poor Boys Tractor Club will have many of their best Massey Fergusons and ‘poppin’ Johnnys’ on display at the Apache Free Fair.
For the past 55 years Poor Boys Antique Tractor Club of Fletcher has restored and preserved countless tractors and implements. The club also educates future generations about how the machinery and different implements are used on the farm.
The club has maintained a presence in the community for more than five decades, and, although he noted some “dwindling” in interest over the past couple of years, John Jones, event coordinator and safety director of the club, anticipates an uptick in participation during the fair. He and the other members enjoy showing and teaching folks about their machines.
“We’ve been doing this for so many years,” Jones said. “Watching the kids’ eyes light up when they see the old machinery, seeing their expressions during demonstrations of threshing machines, corn separators, sawmills, hay presses and balers,” warms members’ hearts, he added. Club members also enjoy swapping stories with people who’ve used some of the same farm machinery.
Jones made a point to acknowledge the local chapters of the Future Farmers of America for their continuing support of agriculture and the club.
“We couldn’t do it without the FFA chapters in Apache, Fletcher and Elgin,” he said. “We can’t thank them enough. Each year we get a new group of FFA members and it’s wonderful to see them learn about the club and the machines.”
For Jones, it’s more than a hobby. As he climbed off his 1952 Farmall M one hot August afternoon of cutting hay, he estimated that he has accumulated 35-40 tractors over the years.
When Jones spoke about a person not being raised on a farm, he jovially offered to give lessons.
“We can teach you all you need to know about tractors and farming,” he laughed.
Those who are unable to attend the Apache Free Fair will have another opportunity to see the club display all the bells and whistles soon. As part of a tradition that goes back as far as Jones can remember, Poor Boys will have their tractors on display at the Fletcher Free Fair later this month.
For more information on Poor Boys Antique Tractor Club, find them on Facebook or call Jones at (580) 450-1858.