For nearly two decades, Peacham's Independence Day parade has looked a little different than most.
"I've been farming here in town for 44 years," said William Goss of Barnet. But every year on Independence Day, Goss takes a break from tending his fields to show off his tractor in Peacham's annual Fourth of July parade.
"It takes tinkering, but it keeps on going," Goss said of his 1972 John Deere, and it isn't even the oldest model on hand. Some are antiques from the 40s and 50s and others are shiny new models with air conditioning.
"This parade started about 15 to 20 years ago. It started with a modest number. There were like six, and two or three of them were lawn tractors and every year it's grown," said Rob Ide, Vermont's DMV Commissioner and Peacham native. Ide is a tractor buff himself. Since his 1949 model died on the way to the parade, he's helping organizers corral the more than 50 tractors as they roll in.
Each tractor gets a homemade sign with the owner's name and the tractor's make and model. Rachel Reis hopes her girly additions to her dad's tractor will call attention to her very important message. "This is a John Deere 2001, and I'm sponsoring stop-bullying.gov," she said.
And parade organizers have a message of their own. Every year they use the train of tractors to recognize a local group. This year's festivities are in honor of Peacham road crew members who have been working hard to fix roads damaged by spring flooding.
After much anticipation, dozens of tractors chugged up Mack Mountain Road, from smallest to largest.
"It's just so fun to watch. Some of the big ones you think are going to be new ones and then they're older," said Kathy Robb of Barre.
Robb came for a slice of hometown Americana in the heart of Peacham. She and the rest of the patriotic crowd of a few hundred cheered the tractors all the way up the hill. "I like the older towns that are proud of their history and are into it. We have to keep that going for kids so they know where they came from."
The main selling point for the kids, of course, was the candy. And what's better than a little, good old fashioned fun on our nation's Independence Day.
Monday, March 10 2014 9:36 AM EDT2014-03-10 13:36:39 GMT
Chef Courtney Contos of Contos Store and Kitchen in Shelburne gave us her mom's homemade soda bread recipe. This Irish treat is just in time for St. Patrick's Day. Try your hand at it. Mom's Irish SodaMore >>
Chef Courtney Contos of Contos Store and Kitchen in Shelburne gave us her mom's homemade soda bread recipe. This Irish treat is just in time for St. Patrick's Day. Try your hand at it.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 10:43 PM EDT2014-03-10 02:43:23 GMT
The Burlington Yoga Conference began Saturday at UVM's Davis Center. The event gives participants a chance to connect the mind body and soul through workshops they may not have access to on a daily basis.More >>
The Burlington Yoga Conference began 6 years ago and has become a staple in the community.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:56 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:56:33 GMT
Flags were flying on the Statehouse steps Sunday afternoon as more than 500 people gathered for the Gun Owners of Vermont Rally."Vermonters -- not just hunting Vermonters who happen to have firearms forMore >>
A trio of gun control measures may have gotten the green light from Burlington voters on Town Meeting Day, but the charter changes face strong opposition across the state, and a possible uphill battle at the Statehouse.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:43 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:43:32 GMT
Is the marketing behind Electronic Cigarettes aimed at kids?New York Senator Chuck Schumer (D-New York) says the industry's trendy packaging and flavors like bubble gum and cotton candy aren't foolingMore >>
Schumer is co-sponsoring a Senate bill that would ban e-cigarette marketing aimed at kids.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:42 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:42:02 GMT
Senator Bernie Sanders is among a group of Senators set to hold an "all-nighter" to call attention to climate Change.Members of the so-called Senate Climate Action Task Force -- nearly two dozen in allMore >>
Senator Bernie Sanders is among a group of Senators set to hold an "all-nighter" to call attention to climate Change.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:40 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:40:46 GMT
A Chimney fire is the likely cause of a blaze that destroyed a home in St. Albans Town.The owner of the home on Pike Drive called for help a little after 9:30 a.m. Sunday. When firefighters arrived theyMore >>
A Chimney fire is the likely cause of a blaze that destroyed a home in St. Albans Town.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 7:38 PM EDT2014-03-09 23:38:52 GMT
Jazz fingers, dance moves -- and plenty of passion. The Urban Reach Dance Convention is giving aspiring dancers the chance to learn from some of the music industry's most acclaimed teachers, who have workedMore >>
Aspiring dancers hit the floor this weekend at the 8th annual Urban Reach Dance Convention.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 6:08 PM EDT2014-03-09 22:08:59 GMT
This morning, Channel 3 has learned there will NOT be a bus strike Monday morning in Chittenden County. CCTA officials told us in a statement that after 19 hours of negotiations that went into the morningMore >>
Sunday morning CCTA officials announced that after a marathon negotiation session they delivered a complete contract proposal to the union.More >>