Tractors headline final day of Fletcher fair

Tractors headline final day of Fletcher fair

FLETCHER, Okla._The Fletcher Free Fair is a Labor Day weekend tradition that dates back to the 1950s.

Of course you could find your basics at the fair, such as the ticket booths and rides, the livestock and even floats made by students.

Not every fair has a group of men, however, who just "play in the dirt". John Jones of the Poor Boys Antique Tractor Club is no stranger to sitting in the driver seat.

"Ever since I was 3 I've been around tractors," Jones said. "I've been with it most of my life. I don't know if that's good or bad, but I've been with it."

He has been working alongside his partners, the Fletcher and Elgin FFA clubs and also the fair board to put on a tractor show and pull.

He explained that as the tractor pushes along, a white tank, filled with water, adds more weight to the sled, thus making it much tougher to pull. Eventually the tractor can't pull the weight anymore.

He said this year's fair has brought in one of the biggest crowds in his 30 years of participation. To him, the fair board has been key to the boost in attendance.

"[They're] putting on a very successful fair this year," Jones said. "I can't believe how they've jumped in and really got on board. This is the first year we've ever had such a nice, nice gathering."

For Jones, riding tractors are easy, he's been doing it basically his whole life. The problem comes with future generations, and he is trying to change that. Jones said the overall age of the club has been getting older, so they have seen a bit of a dip in their numbers. He uses the fair to carry on the interest, which is why they do what they do.

"We really enjoy that," Jones said. "The expression on their faces and getting involved with us older folk, they don't have that in school. They come out here for this open air school and we have a good response."

Also included in the tractor show were categories of ugliest tractor, most unusual, oldest tractor and best of show.