BY KIERAN O'MAHONY
NOW in its eighth year, the West Cork Vintage Ploughing and Threshing Association's Ford 100 Fest in Crohane, Ballinascarthy, promises another spectacular day of vintage tractors, ploughing and even helicopter rides.Â
With Ford coming on board this year as the event's sponsor to celebrate 100 years of Ford in Ireland the 2017 event will take place in the ancestral family home farm of Henry Ford on Sunday August 27th from 12 to 6pm.
âWe have a different theme every year for the harvest and this year Henry Ford & Son Ltd decided to sponsor our event to mark the centenary of Ford in Ireland,' said Don Coakley, chairperson of West Cork Vintage Ploughing and Threshing Association.
âOur Ford 100 Fest will really be the highlight event of the summer in West Cork and we are indebted to Vivian Buttimer and the Ford-Buttimer family for hosting the event on the Ford family farm. In this centenary year of Ford in Ireland, we are also hugely grateful to the team at Henry Ford and Son Ltd for their generous support of the event.'
Peter Love, editor of the Ford and Fordson Tractor magazine will officially open this year's event at 2.30pm, which will also feature displays of Ford models going right back to the iconic Model T, which was the car that helped Henry Ford bring motoring to the masses.Â
âThere's an action-packed programme of events throughout the day, including silage cutting, corn cutting, threshing and there will also be a Ford and New Holland silage demonstration using vehicles from around the 1970s to the present,' added Don.
There will also be a vintage ploughing plus pre-All Ireland ploughing and, for those interested in machinery, a display standÂ will be there featuring new machinery from Deane Machinery, Derry O'Donovan, Frank Deane Machinery Sales, Lynch & McCarthy and MC&S New Holland Main Dealers. âAs well as plenty of machinery of display, Ford will also have a stand there with Bandon Motors and, for foodies attending the event, there will be plenty of food sampling from a range of West Cork food producers and there will also be a pig on a spit, thanks to Scally's SuperValu in Clonakilty.'
For the young at heart, there will be a kids' play area, a dog show as well as helicopter rides which is sure to be one of the day's highlights, providing attendees with a bird's eye view of the event. There will also be an exhibition on milking cows on the Ford Family herd as well one on butter making.
As well as featuringÂ a display of Ford models, the event will also see one of the largest display of Fordson tractors ever assembled in Ireland. Fordson tractors were the first vehicles to produced at the Cork Ford plant on the Marina, which was established 100 years ago this year in 1917.
âWhere else could the Ford 100 Fest take place other than at the ancestral homestead from where Henry Ford's father and his family emigrated to the US in 1847?' commented CiarÃ¡n McMahon, chairman and managing director of Henry Ford & Son Ltd.
All proceeds from this year's event will go to the West Cork Vintage Ploughing and Threshing Association's chosen charities, which are Temple Street Children's Hospital in Dublin, theÂ Alzheimer's Unit at Clonakilty Hospital, Cancer Connect and West Cork Rapid Response.Â
âIt's not only Ford vintage tractors that are featured and all makes and models are welcome to attend this year's event,' added Don.
For more updates on Ford 100 Fest, see www.vintageploughing.com and their Facebook page. Contact Don Coakley on 086-0765441 for any enquiries.