It was more than a tractor ride last Saturday. It was a tractor parade!
It all started back after the COVID-19 pandemic hit Merced County. Local friends, Justin Pareira and Augie Scoto, both collect antique John Deere tractors and show them off at local events. During covid, however, all the tractor shows and country fairs were cancelled.
But that didn’t stop the itch to take the old tractors out. They talked about it, and they came up with the idea of a tractor ride from Augie’s farm in the McSwain area to Justin’s farm in the Hopeton area. They would have a nice BBQ lunch at their destination, and then ride back.
How much more social distance can you get than driving in open-air tractors 20 feet apart.
From that first ride in October of 2020, Justin and Augie’s ride has grown to 35 vintage tractors and a few old trucks. It’s become an event to gather with family and friends, swap stories, and relax for one day a year.
And besides, all the honking and thumbs up along the way sure makes a farmer feel appreciated.