The 15th Harvest Festival is planned for Sept. 17-18 |

The 15th Harvest Festival is planned for Sept. 17-18

Potatoes are the featured crop of this year’s Harvest Festival at the Farm And Ranch Museum on Sept. 17-18.

Now in its 15th year, the annual gathering has become the premier agricultural event in western Nebraska attracting visitors form throughout the nation and even a foreign country or two.

Located at the FARM campus on the west edge of Gering, Neb., and adjacent to Scotts Bluff National Monument, the event takes visitors back in time when crops were planted and harvested by hand or horse-drawn equipment. The equipment on display year around in the spacious exhibit hall and throughout the grounds.

Activities begin at 7 a.m. on Sept. 17 with a Gering Kiwanis pancake breakfast. At 9 a.m. the FARM grounds open to visitors who will see tractor and horse exhibits, threshing, corn shelling and grinding, a horse-powered corn elevator, hay rack rides, equipment parades, blacksmithing, and children’s activities.

With potatoes being featured this year there will be demonstrations of horse-drawn and tractor-powered equipment, such as planters, diggers, cutters, harvesters, sorters, and sprayers as well as the original baskets, sacks and belts.

A popular activity at each harvest festival is a “dig, sack and take home” potato harvest.

The Gering Kiwanis corn maze will be open for business during the weekend as well.

Sunday’s events begin with a church service from 9-10 a.m. and continue on the same format as Saturday.

A new activity this year will be the unveiling of a new pedal tractor course for the kids, thanks to the generosity of the David Kreiling memorial.

Admission to the festival is $3. Guest exhibitors are always welcome. Members of FARM, exhibitors and children under 10 are admitted free.

The festival runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.

A special event this year to cap off the weekend is the appearance in concert at Five Rocks Amphitheater in Gering by Nashville recording star John Conlee, who might be best known for his 1978 hit “Rose Colored Glasses” and his 1979 release of “Back Side of Thirty.”

Tickets for the concert are $20 for adults ($25 at the gate) and $10 for children 6-12. The Hebbert Family Singers will be the opening act for the concert.

For tickets or information call the Farm And Ranch Museum at (308) 436-1989.

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