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Festival is fundraiser for Historical Society

SANBORN – Hungry? Why not start the day with an old-fashioned farm breakfast to be served up starting at 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday during the 11th annual Farm Museum Festival?

The event will be hosted by the Sanborn Area Historical Society at its farm museum grounds at 2660 Saunders Settlement Road (Route 31), Sanborn, and serves as its largest fundraiser of the year.

A pancake breakfast kicks off the day from 8 to 11 a.m. Saturday, while French toast is on the menu from 8 to 11 a.m. Sunday. The cost each day is $8 for adults, $5 for kids age 6-12; and free for kids 5 and under. Other festival fare will be for sale throughout both days.

Opening ceremonies start at 10 a.m. Saturday, followed by the Native American Niagara River Dancers from 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. A raised beadwork exhibit also will feature “jitterbug-making” (a small necklace design) from noon to 3 p.m. for the children. Fife and drum music will fill the air from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. and popular steel guitarist Bill Easton will perform from 12:30 to 2 p.m.

A new petting zoo will be featured this year, as well as kids’ activities in Townsend Hall, including a duck pond and coloring contest.

For some, the highlight of each day is the giant tractor parade, scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, where owners will vie for prizes and all will receive dash plaques. The tractor parade is repeated at 1 p.m. Sunday, but is held “just for fun” that day, according to Bonnie Haskell, museum curator. Haskell and Glenn Wienke co-chair this event.

“We can get up to around 100 tractors for the parade and it’s the highlight of the whole festival,” said Haskell. “And, this year, we’ll include a children’s tractor parade at the end (of both days’ parades), so if kids want to come and bring their little tractors, they’re more than welcome to.

“Prizes awarded on Saturday are for best-looking or oldest tractor – things like that,” Haskell added. “The public walks up and down the field and looks at the tractors and puts their votes into a box. All of the tractor drivers get dash plaques. Those guys collect them year to year and this is a big thing for them. The classic cars get plaques, too.”

The Instigators will provide musical entertainment from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m., with the festival closing at 6 p.m.

Following the French toast breakfast Sunday, the Niagara River Dancers will return from 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. While the tractor parade gets underway at 1 p.m., a “make your own sundae” event also will be offered for $2.50. The raised beadwork exhibit and jitterbug-making continues from noon to 3 p.m., and the Sanborn Fire Company Band will perform from 2 to 3:30 p.m.

A huge basket raffle will be offered both days, with auction and money raffle winners announced at 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

Organizers are still accepting donations of theme baskets or items for baskets, by calling Haskell at 990-6909.

A flea market also will be featured each day, as well as artisans’ wares; a baked goods sale; and vendors selling produce. Festival-goers also will have the opportunity to view classic cars and antique tractors.

The museum grounds will be open for tours, with artifacts on display in the original 1890 Wienke barn and Read Building.

The society will use proceeds from this event to help build a new pole barn for storage and to help restore the circa 1825 structure first built as a church and most recently home to Sanborn American Legion Post No. 969, which was deeded to the society and moved to its grounds last fall. The society intends to restore it and open it to the public.

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