WAYNE TOWNSHIP — A love of steam engines connects thousands of people gathering this weekend at the Ashtabula County Steam Engine Club show.
Tisha Dillon-Everly, of Carroll County Maryland, has fond memories of Ashtabula County and the show. “I am here to show my dad’s engine,” she said.
Dillon-Everly said her father, Harvey Dillon, died several years ago and this is the first time back to the show. “They started the engine show on my grandfather’s property,” she said.
Dillon-Everly said the property was down the road from the present site on Route 322. She said she loved going to shows.
“My dad was tinkering with them (steam engines) all the time. The shows were great. I loved the big steamers. They were my favorite,” she said.
Dave Yochim, of Albion, came by his love of steam engines early as well. Finding that perfect steam engine usually takes a long time. “It took me about six years to find it. You have to fall into it” he said.
The steam engine became available in 2013 and it needed a lot of work. Yochim said the boiler comes from the early 1900s and the engine is sort of a Frankenstein.
“It took me about a year (to get it operational),” Yochim said. He said he has a machine shop which makes it possible to run the engine because there are no longer any parts available for the engines.
Ruth Lazor, membership secretary for the Ashtabula County Steam Engine Club, said attendance at the event has been good. “Fantastic, we had very good attendance,” she said
Lazor said the organization operates with a board of directors, committees and trustees. They own the property on Route 322 and continue to improve it with new buildings and amenities, she said.
“We will be working on expanding the kitchen” she said. She said Case is the featured tractor company and Wisconsin Engine is the featured engine for the weekend.
Terry Steen of Jamestown, Pennsylvania, used to own antique tractors but now just enjoys “looking them over.”
The event continues today with a 9 a.m. concert by Dan Schall and a 1 p.m. parade. A tractor pull is scheduled to follow the parade.
A variety of historical working displays are also on-site including steam engines, an 1800s school house, a shingle mill, a passenger depot and a freight depot to name a few.
Food options were also available in abundance with ice cream, pie and dinners.