The 49th Annual Mark Twain Old Threshers runs from July 12 to July 15 at the Paris Fairgrounds.
Angie Fields is outwardly cool, calm and collected, which is good considering that she is chairing her ninth Mark Twain Old Threshers Reunion, which is only two weeks away.
The 49th Annual Mark Twain Old Threshers runs from July 12 to July 15 at the Paris Fairgrounds. Admission to this year’s event is a $5 button is good for all shows and events. Program books will available. Children under 12 years old are free when accompanied by an adult, and 12- to 16-year-olds must have parental supervision.
“We are in good shape,” Fields said. “There are always last-minute details, but it is going well.”
Her biggest concern, as always, is weather. It is Missouri, it is July and it is thunderstorm season. In 2016 two violent storms that downed trees across the area put a wrench in the show, canceling opening-night activities. Last year, weather cooperated.
“We obviously have our fingers crossed,” she said.
The reunion starts on Thursday with the Poker Style Tractor Cruise starting at 9 a.m. The entry fee includes lunch along the way. The Food Shack will be open, with biscuits and gravy and cinnamon rolls, from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m.
A major opening-day change this year is a new brisket dinner, which replace the fish fry. The dinner starts at 5:30 p.m. at the Food Shack. The cost is $9 per plate and $4 for children six and under.
“We encourage everyone to come out and eat with us,” Fields said. “You can listen to some good music by Kelly Stafford.”
Here are some highlights for the reunion:
The gates open at 2 p.m. on Friday and 7 a.m. on Saturday. The Flea Market will be open both days.
On Friday, there will be a Baby Show starting at 6 p.m. with registration at p.m. Contestants do not have to be Monroe County residents. Boys and Girls Divisions are 0-6 Months, 7-12 Months, 13-18 Months, 19-24 months and 25-35 Months. An Overall Grand Champion will be chosen. There will also be a Lil’ Mr. and Miss Contest open to 3- to 5-year-olds.
Following the Baby Show, there will be a competition for Mr. and Mrs. Old Threshers 19 and up, Mr. and Miss Old Threshers, 15-18, Jr. Mr. Miss Old Threshers, 12-14 and Prince and Princess 6-11.
The Miniature Draft/Pony Pull will start at Friday at 6:30 p.m. in the south end of the arena. Weigh-In will be at 3:30 p.m.
Friday evening ends with Silver Wings Band. The old country music will begin at 8 p.m.
On Saturday, lineup will be at 9 a.m. on Saturday behind the Grandstand and at 10 a.m., the Old Thresher’s Parade will head downtown. Also on Saturday:
There will be an Antique Car and Truck Show after the Parade on the west side of the Fairground under the Shelter. Cars and Trucks must be 25 years old or older.
Tractor games will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Missouri State Saddle Club Association & Central Missouri Saddle Club Circuit Horse Show in the arena from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
It will be held in the Arena from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Contact Eric Joiner 573-470-0379
The auction is back and will be held at 1 p.m. Be there to bid on some nice items.
The Washers Tournament starts at 2 p.m. by the Big White Tent.
A Garden Tractor Pull sponsored by the Montgomery County Garden Tractor Pullers will begin at 2 p.m. on the Pulling Track.
The Antique Classic Tractor Pull will begin around 3 p.m. Registration starts at 2 p.m. There will be a 50 percent payback. The best overall restored tractor will receive a trophy before the pull.
Pro Draft Horse Pull at 6 p.m. in the Arena. The demonstration of strength from the horses is a reminder of what life was like before tractors were invented. You will be amazed at how much weight these beautiful horses can pull! Spectators should remain quiet until each team’s pull is complete. It is hard to do if your favorite team is about to complete their pull, but it can ruin a good contest for everybody if you don’t. An encouraging “Go” can sound like “Whoa” to any horse even though they do have better hearing than we humans!
Saturday evening will conclude with music by Ridge Runners Band starting at 8 p.m.
On Sunday, another Missouri State Saddle Club Association and Central Missouri Saddle Club Circuit Horse Show will be held in the Arena at 11:00 A.M.
Other attractions include threshing with old time equipment, saw mills in operation, early day gas engines and farm tractors, Conservation exhibits, straw baling, a shingle mill, and a rope-making machine.
Featured this year will be Allis Chalmers, Rumley, and Classic and Related Equipment.
Fields said that people attending the reunion will have plenty of opportunities to eat. The Mark Twain Old Threshers Food Booth will be serving brats, hamburgers, hot dogs, walking tacos, cold soda pop, tea, lemonade, bottled water, and BBQ pork steak dinners. Bagged ice will be available. Biscuits and gravy will be served Friday from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. On Saturday, eggs, sausage, hash browns, biscuits, coffee, and juice will be on sale from 7 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.