REGIONAL: Tractor ride to benefit North Carolina’s Frail Aging

Published 2:25 pm Wednesday, June 16, 2021

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The10th annual Tractor Ride will take place June 30 at Denton FarmPark in Denton. Proceeds from the Tractor Ride, which kicks off the 51st annual Southeast Old Threshers’ Reunion, are traditionally donated to a local nonprofit. This year’s recipient is North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry (NCBAM). The group will use 100 percent of the funds to complete safety projects for frail older adults in need.

“We are thrilled to be chosen as the recipient of the fundraiser this year,” NCBAM Director Dr. Sandy Gregory said. “Lumber costs have skyrocketed and this will help us get many more wheelchair ramps built for frail seniors in need. We have clients who haven’t left their homes in months and sometimes years, simply because of no safe way to traverse the steps of their homes.”

Gates open on June 30 at 7:30 a.m. for registration. The Tractor Ride begins at 9, with a short opening ceremony introducing the selected non-profit. A parade of tractors (and a tram) then pull out for a 19-mile tour of the Denton countryside. A highlight is parading through the Mountain Vista Health Park where residents of the skilled nursing facility are brought outside to wave at the drivers and riders. The parade then pauses at the First Baptist Church of Denton for a barbecue lunch served by volunteers before heading back to the FarmPark.

Participating in the Tractor Ride costs $25 per person ($35 Tram) and includes lunch, T-shirt and a goody bag from local supporters,

NCBAM will also receive the proceeds from the live auction at 6 p.m. July 1. The auction will feature a handcrafted Noah’s Ark with animals, a vacation time share, local pottery, tickets to local attractions and an Anel Complete Insulated Beehive kit. 

This year’s Tractor Ride will be held in memory of Randy Chappell, who died in 2020 after cooking barbecue for the ride for five years. Remembering his contributions is important to Tim Loflin and others at the family-run FarmPark.

“Randy donated his services as Pitmaster for many years and we’re going to miss him very much.”

To pledge support, or learn more about the Tractor Ride, contact Denton FarmPark at 336-859-2755. To learn more about North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry, call 877.506.2226.