Corn binder restoration completed!

Here are two pictures of our completely restored corn binder, taken from different angles. This project took three winters to complete. It has been completely rebuilt from the ground up, a very frustrating project as there are none in existence to copy. Our work crew had to rely on pictures that they gleaned from the web. The crew gives much credit to member Mike Parker, whose persistence, we’re told, is the only reason it got this far after others had given up.   There are also two shots of the new cooper shop, long discussed at directors’ meetings and now finally completed except for shingling, which will be done in the spring. 



Winter is quiet at NFHC

Winter appears to be a quiet time at Northville Farm Heritage Centre, but if you come at the right time there will be some activity on the site. Card parties happen most Wednesday evenings, barring bad weather or competing events. The cooper shop is under construction, with a few men showing up on Wednesdays, and some more often than that. Monthly directors meetings continue to be held on the first Thursday of each month, at 7:30 p.m. Anyone interested is welcome to attend these.

In the meantime, we were supplied with another batch of photos taken at Harvest Festival 2014 on August 31. Below we display some of them, mostly taken while oats were being harvested and threshed, but also a team of oxen and a fine old hay wagon.

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Activities continue at NFHC

The main events for 2014 are all over with at NFHC, but that doesn’t mean we’ve shut down for the winter. Directors continue to meet monthly (first Thursday of every month; everyone welcome).

A floor has been laid for the long-awaited cooper shop, so that’s a good start.

Card parties are going to get underway again on Wednesday, November 12, at 7 p.m. Contact persons are Marvin Brown at 679-1982, or Bob McLeod at 365-5180. Games being played are cribbage and 45s. Newcomers are very welcome! And if you read this notice, please pass it on to friends who might enjoy playing cards.

Plans are being made for the annual Christmas party, to be held Thursday, Dec. 4, immediately following a short business meeting at 7 p.m. Please bring something to eat and a festive mood. Annual dues of $10 are due at this time. Hope to see you there!

Gorgeous fall weather helps! (for the Fall tractor pull)

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Warm, sunny weather helped draw a good crowd to the 6th Annual Fall Tractor Pull at Northville Farm Heritage Centre on Saturday, September 27. There were 32 tractors entered, with drivers ranging from a young girl to older men. The atmosphere was relaxed as usual, with people enjoying the sun, the hot dogs, the socializing, and yes, the tractors pulling increasingly heavier weights. Announcer Gloria made sure the audience was kept well informed on each tractor, its owner/driver, the class currently underway, and the weights being pulled. The event was enhanced by a good display of antique cars and trucks, among which a tan coloured T-bird was especially appealing (wouldn’t we all love to have one?). People come from far away to show the work they’ve put into these old vehicles, as do the owners of the competing tractors. One reason for buying a rusty old relic and turning it into an authentic antique is to display it to the maximum number of viewers. Judging by the amount of work put into these vehicles it’s more a passion than a hobby. Cookhouse staff were kept busy serving their hot dogs, hamburgers, drinks, and ice cream until the end, when they were finally able to relax a bit. Several families brought their young children, for whom the horse hitching post became an instant monkey bar. The sandbox and swing set also got a good workout.  One woman using a scooter told us she found the site totally accessible. There are ramps to all the buildings, including Heritage Hall where the toilets are. In fact, Heritage Hall on this day displayed a sturdy, brand new deck with steps and a ramp leading to the grounds. At their monthly meeting next week, NFHC directors will be able to pat carpenter Hank on the back once again. Below is a list of all the winners:

3000LBS  1st  John Aten,  2nd  Jeffrey Morash,  3rd Richard Morse

3500LBS  1st  Richard Morse,  2nd  Monty Hall,  3rd  Mitchell Aten

4000LBS   1st  Jacob Pearson,  2nd  John Aten,  3rd  Monty Hall

5000LBS   1st  Mike Huntley,  2nd  Mark Bowen,  3rd  John Aten

6000LBS  1st  Monty Hall,  2nd  Tim Griffiths,  3rd  Shane Kaizer

7000LBS  1st  Robert Foley,  Tied for 2nd  Sherri Wright and Shane Kaizer,  3rd  Tom Levy

8000LBS  1st Lara Kretzinger,  2nd  Robert Foley,  3rd  Carmen Salter Jones

9000LBS  1st  Sherri Wright,  2nd  Carmen Salter Jones,  3rd  Lara Kretzinger

10000LBS  1st  Carmen Salter Jones,  2nd  Lara Kretzinger,  3rd  Sam Neatby

11000LBS  1st  Fred Salter,  2nd  Carmen Salter Jones,  3rd  Alison Woolaver

12000LBS  1st  Fred Salter,  2nd  Mike Sanford,  3rd  Alison Woolaver

14000LBS  1st Mike Sanford  2nd  Fred Salter,  3rd  Alison Woolaver

Good turnout for Harvest Festival

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Harvest Festival 2014 was held under cloudy skies, but with temperatures warm enough for ice cream. It was a comfortable day to watch oxen strain every muscle, sit and listen to the lively fiddle music, or wander the grounds to check out the many artifacts. We can now say that visitors came from as far away as Iceland. Okay, maybe Harvest Festival wasn’t the main reason for their trip, but they very much enjoyed the oxen in particular. Around two dozen teams of oxen worked hard to pull yet another 200 lb. block, with the last ones pulling more than 4000 lbs. Quite a few young children with their parents were in evidence, especially around the face painting/balloon animals/fish pond area and in the Fur and Feathers barn where bunnies and little chicks were on display. Even the sawmill got a workout, with its dangerous 4′ diameter blade slicing effortlessly through lumber. The Cookhouse crew were kept busy. As for the produce competition, there were again a few more entries and organizers are hoping that word of mouth will drive those numbers up some more in 2015.

The photos above tell some of the story. They show a team being spurred to full effort by their teamster, Ron Corkum (centre) and Friends providing lively music, NFHC members demonstrating the sawmill, Cookhouse customers waiting for their burgers; the baking competition entries being judged, and one member of the face painting team showing off the snake around her wrist.

Don’t forget Harvest Festival This Sunday!

HarvestFestivalTime to make plans for attending Harvest Festival this Sunday!

Oats will be harvested during the morning, weather permitting, with threshing in the afternoon. Entries for the baking and produce competitions should be in Heritage Hall between 11:30 and 12:30, with judging soon afterwards. Here’s the classes for this year:

Baking competition: Class 1: whole wheat bread; 2: blueberry pie; 3: chocolate chip cookies

Garden competition: Class 1: seven string beans on a plate; Class 2: a variety of produce, attractively displayed Class 3: seven early apples, any variety, on a plate

(entry tags supplied when you deliver to NFHC)

There’s lots for kids and adults to see and do, and of course the Cookhouse will be open. Admission is by freewill donation and covers everything except the food. Come join us and have a good relaxing time.

P.S.: The quilting group which meets at NFHC every week will soon have a quilt for sale, at only $400. Come and see it too.
















tries for the baking and produce competition should be at NFHC between 11:30 and 12:30 Sunday, with judging shortly afterwards.

Quilting Bee ongoing at NFHC


A rotating group of women – and one man – have been quilting at Northville Farm Heritage Centre every Wednesday. They are currently working on a quilt that will be offered for sale when completed (at the low price of only $400). Anyone wishing to join in for a few stitches, or just to watch this old craft being practised, feel free to join them any Wednesday. Or if you’d like to buy the quilt, contact and you’ll be put in touch with the right person. On the photo shown here, Margaret, Diana, and Linda are stitching away.

Maintenance is an ongoing concern at NFHC and Wednesdays are already a regular work day there, with a core group of men looking after the lawns, repairs, necessary painting, and other tasks. As well, NFHC has become a sociable gathering place for older members who can’t necessarily hammer roofing into place any more. The second photo shows Carl and Aart taking a break from lawn mowing and whippersnipping.

Coming up very soon now: Harvest Festival on Sunday, August 31. Please see previous post!