Steam engine and craft show this weekend in Smithsburg

September 22, 2005|by JULIE E. GREENE

SMITHSBURG - The 31st annual Smithsburg Steam Engine & Craft Show is this weekend, but the show isn't limited to steam engines.

Five or six antique steam-powered traction engines are expected at the show at the Smithsburg Volunteer Fire Company fire hall grounds, event chairman Mike Rohrer said. Also on display will be about 250 antique and vintage gas-powered tractors.

Smithsburg has significant historical ties to steam engines.

George Frick, of Quincy Township, Pa., built his first steam engine in 1845. Then he moved to Ringgold, where he continued to build steam engines before moving to Waynesboro, Pa., to open Frick Company, Rohrer said.


Peter Geiser built the first working grain separator - a steam-powered precursor to the threshing machine - just west of Smithsburg in 1852 before moving to Waynesboro.

The show also will feature about 75 to 100 small, single-cylinder gas engines, the type used around the family farm to run water pumps or washing machines, Rohrer said.

Close to 100 antique riding lawn mowers from before 1964 will be on display.

For the shoppers, there will be about 120 arts, crafts and flea market vendors.

The show also gives people a chance to see how farming was done in the late 1800s and early 1900s with lumber-sawing and wheat- threshing demonstrations, Rohrer said.

The show is the chief fundraiser for Smithsburg High School's athletic booster club, said Rohrer, a 1973 graduate who helped start the first show in 1974. Proceeds will be used to buy equipment and uniforms for the school's athletic programs.

Rohrer expects 25,000 to 30,000 people to attend the event each day.

A kiddie tractor pedal pull for ages 5 to 10 will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday. Competitions will be held for different age groups. Sign up between noon and 2 p.m. at the registration booth.

Vendors will sell "Leopard stew," country ham sandwiches, pork barbecue, pork tenderloin, crab cakes, steamers, hot dogs, fresh cut French fries, bean soup and apple pies.

If you go...

WHAT: 31st annual Smithsburg Steam Engine & Craft Show

WHEN: 9 a.m. to about 7 p.m. (when the parade of farm equipment concludes) Saturday, Sept. 24; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25.

WHERE: Smithsburg Volunteer Fire Company grounds on North Main Street

COST: Free admission; donation for parking.

DIRECTIONS: Take Md. 64 east toward Smithsburg. Turn left on Md. 66 (Mapleville Road). At the Square turn left on North Main Street. At the bottom of the hill turn right on School Lane, where there will be parking.

For more information, call Mike Rohrer at 301-824-3593.

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