The 27th Annual Old-Time Plowing Bee was held near Adrian on Sept. 5.
It all started 27 years ago in 1995, with an "arms-over-pickup-box-type" conversation between a couple of local farmers thinking about "the good ole days." With six people, five tractors and three plows, the first Old-Time Plowing Bee took place just north of Adrian, North Dakota. The Miller Family and several local residents are dedicated to preserving the tradition.
This year’s event included tractors ranging from Minneapolis-Moline, Case, Oliver, John Deere and International. There were about 20 tractor and plow outfits making a rainbow of colors across Miller's field northwest of Adrian. Lee Miller purchased this land around the time of the first plowing beeo. This was the second time the event was held at this location. Spring wheat was seeded in late April. After a 5-inch downpour in early June, very little rain was received until after harvest. Despite dry conditions, the wheat yielded surprisingly good, participants said. About 4 inches of rain in the last few weeks made conditions nearly perfect for fall plowing. About 50 acres were plowed on Sunday during the Bee.
In 1995, there were six participants: Kent, Lee and Mike Miller, Garry and Janice Block and Teddy Gahner. They had five old John Deere tractors, an R, an unstyled A, a 60, a D, two As and two 3-bottom and one 5-bottom plow.
On Sunday, several plowed and more gathered to visit and reminisce. It has become a family reunion for many attending. A potluck lunch has also been added to the tradition. Enthusiasts look forward to attending the Old-Time Plowing Bee each Labor Day weekend.