Carstens Farm Days 2016
Carstens 1880 Farmstead, Inc. hosted the 34th annual Farm Days over the weekend of September 11th & 12th, 2016 at the Carstens Farm, near Shelby, Iowa. The goal of the organization is to preserve and celebrate Iowa’s farm history and, towards that goal, Farm Days includes many traditional Iowa farming practices and activities.
With rows of US flags proudly waving in the wind, attendees pulled into the farmstead to see dozens and dozens of classic tractors (and many classic cars) lined up neatly and food, craft and antique vendors scattered about the grounds between the well-maintained farm home, barns, corn crib and other out-buildings. Many folks came with campers, which became a small community of friends parked in a pasture throughout the weekend.
There were blacksmithing, corn-picking and –shelling, hay baling, threshing, sawmill, weaving and other interesting field demonstrations and a terrific parade of classic tractors, including rare antique models, steam engines and miniature, home-made models. I enjoyed hearing Emcee/Announcer Harvey Ferris read interesting details and trivia about the tractors, implements, their owners and history as each passed the reviewing stand.
The kids also had a pedal-powered tractor pull and there was lots of delicious food with home-made ice cream for dessert. Beyond the farm activities, other entertainment included The Foggy Mountain Cloggers, The River City Shakers and the Tamie Hall Band.
My wife, Barb, accompanied me to Farm Days on Saturday and we both enjoyed the afternoon tremendously. I think her favorite part was chatting with Leora, who was operating a loom while we both watched intently as she skillfully wove before our very eyes.
Having spent a huge part of my youth on a farm, this is among my favorite annual productions to set up. This year, Midwest Sound & Lighting employed a Yamaha powered mixer, JBL MP415 speakers, a TOA mixer/amplifier for the distributed sound system and a pair of MiPro MA-series battery-powered personal PA systems for the farm tours. By all accounts, Farm Day 2016 was fantastic!