PA Farm Show!!!

Please check the January program page for info on events. I'll be updating the page as 2018 calendars come online.

It's PA Farm Show time (Jan. 6-13)! And you know what that means. Arguments about whether "Farm Show weather" is a thing (given this week's weather - it's a thing). Decisions about which flavor of milkshake to buy. Crises of conscience (crisis of consciences?) about how many potato donuts is too many. And yes, I know, it's not just about the food. There's animals and farm equipment and cooking demos and feats of strength and lots of other good stuff (Farm Show Visitor's Guide).

And best of all, there's Pennsylvania history. (Well, not better than the potato donuts, but just as good.)

Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum is at the Farm Show again this year (photo LVM)

Staff from Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum will be on hand this year with an exhibit titled "Power Technology - Yesterday and Today." The machinery included illustrates the many different power technologies available to individuals in the past and how many of these older technologies are making a comeback. Landis Valley curator Bruce Bomberger told me that the exhibit makes "the comparison with 100 years ago when, like now, there were a number of competing power and energy technologies also jockeying for consumer position. And we talk briefly about the many factors that affect the selection of one power technology over another."

The display includes 2 large early 20th-century gasoline engines, a horse sweep, a large model traction steam engine, and a Delco light plant (generator). A wooden tread power is belted to a butter churn; this could have been run by a child or small animal. Other types of machines that were belted to power sources include a corn sheller, fodder chopper, and feed mill.

You'll find the Landis Valley exhibit on the west side of the Main Hall (Maclay Street side of the Farm Show Complex) in Booth 607, near the Culinary Connection Stage.

Human-powered machines are just part of the display (photo LVM)

On the east end of the Main Hall, look for Booths 691 and 692 (near the carousel) to find other PHMC exhibits. The State Museum of PA Section of Archaeology will focus on "Foragers to Farmers: The development of agriculture in Pennsylvania." Their display includes the ever-popular dugout canoe, a corn grinding activity for children, and recipes for cooking wild foods.

Staff from the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and Pennsylvania State Archives will help you "Find Your Story" with free searches and the Cultural Resources Geographic Information System (CRGIS). The popular Historical Marker Scavenger Hunt will also be in place this year. Read more on the SHPO blog. Please note that the State Archives Search Room will be closed Jan. 6-13 so that all hands can be on deck at the Farm Show. Regular Search Room hours will resume on Jan. 17.

To keep up to date with happenings at the Farm Show, you can visit their website, follow them on Facebook, or search the Twitter hashtag (#PAFS18).

That leaves just one sacred Farm Show topic we haven't addressed. "But you mentioned the donuts already." Okay, so there's more than one. The butter sculpture - love it or hate it, it wouldn't be the Farm Show without it. Penn Live put together a video of past sculptures (view it on YouTube if the video below doesn't play). If you can't make it in person, you can see this year's sculpture, unveiled on Jan. 4, on the Farm Show Facebook page.


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