The 2018 Francisco FarmFest is adding something new this autumn — something that may stay with people for an entire year.
The festival will include unveiling the winners of a tractor photo contest, with 13 winning entries appearing on a 2019 calendar.
“The tractor calendar is a new part of FarmFest,” said Texie Jessup, who is chairing this portion of the festivities. “We invite everyone to send photos that include tractors. And at the event, the winning 13 pictures will be displayed, and attendees will get to vote for the cover photo.”
There are two categories, one for adults and another for junior shutterbugs. Submissions must include an original photo, a caption describing the image and contact information so organizers can inform winners. Pictures can be images of a tractor of any size, make or model, year or condition and can even be a photo of a children’s toy tractor. The selection committee is especially interested in photos of working tractors and seasonal pictures that contain tractors.
The grand prize winner of the contest will have their photo on the cover of the calendar and a $25 prize. The calendar will include 12 other winners who will receive a free calendar. Pending print space, organizers hope to include a collage of tractor photos submitted by young people as an inset.
There are two ways to enter pictures. To submit printed photos, send the photo, a caption with description and contact information to 7104 NC 89 West, Westfield, NC 27053. To submit electronically, email a labeled photo to Franciscofarmfest@gmail.com, along with the caption and contact information in the body of the email.
Organizers caution entrants not to send unnamed photos. For example, don’t attach photos named DSC_534 or simply labeled “tractor.” Label each photo before submitting it with your name, such as “John Smith Tractor Photo” or similar identifying information. For printed photos delivered by regular mail, label the back of the photo with the submitter’s name as well.
The contest entry period ends at midnight on Sept. 5 so organizers must have submissions by then to consider the pictures for the calendar.
In addition to the photo contest, organizers have planned a full day of other activities. In keeping with the theme of the region’s rich agricultural history, there are two tractor parades and stand-alone tractor display.
“This is an exciting part of Francisco FarmFest, and we will be handing out awards in several categories,” said Stephen Jessup, parade coordinator. “There will be two parades with one at 10 a.m. and the second at 2:30 p.m. Tommy Collins will serve as grand marshal.”
Local quilters display works of fiber art in a dedicated fiber house during the festival along with crafting artisans, old-time culinary traditions like canning exhibits and blacksmithing.
Kicking off the fall season, attendees will also participate in cider tastings, games and be able to purchase homemade baked goods and other food and beverages. Several musicians are slated to take the stage throughout the day with an array of bluegrass, country standards and old-time music.
Local neighbors held the first ever FarmFest event in 2016, coming together to keep that communal spirit alive after the closing of the Francisco School.
The FarmFest event is slated for Saturday, Sept. 22 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the grounds of the Old Francisco School in Westfield. For more details on the photo contest or Francisco FarmFest, visit FranciscoFarmFest.com or on Facebook at facebook.com/oldraider.