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Fletcher celebrates end of summer with antique tractors, circus-themed parade

John Jones remembers farming with horses on his family’s land right up until he turned 17.

“Then we went to tractors and it’s been tractors ever since,” said the Iowa native.

For nearly 70 years, Jones has collected antique machinery — from hand water pumps to corn shuckers and of course, tractors.

Jones will share his collection Friday at the Fletcher Fairgrounds as part of the annual Heritage Days, hosted by the Poor Boys Antique Tractor Club. The event is hosted in conjunction with the Fletcher Free Fair.

Jones, safety officer and event coordinator for the tractor club, said it isn’t quite Labor Day weekend without Heritage Days, which this year will feature a variety of saw mills, antique tractors and 100-year-old hand tools.

Poor Boys has invited more than 10 area schools to bring their students to check out the equipment and eat free ice cream on Friday.

“I especially love watching the kids and the expression on their faces,” Jones said. “The older people, too, they really get into it.”

On Saturday, Heritage Days attendees can participate in a tractor pull starting at 1 p.m. at the fairgrounds.

“Bring your tractors by to sign up,” Jones said. “We’re hoping for cool weather.”

This week’s entertainment doesn’t stop there. The free fair kicks off Thursday and runs through Saturday, each day featuring homemade and homegrown exhibits, carnival games and evening entertainment, including local favorite Chuck Mantooth, from Sterling.

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