I’m not sure how many farm shows and machinery events I’ve been at in the last five years, certainly a lot. And they’ve been spread over a pretty wide geographic area, across North America and in Europe. There are also a few shows I haven’t been able to get to that are still on my bucket list.
Like all things in life, being exposed to a wide variety of experiences in different countries gives you a better perspective on what happens here, at home. Having had a look at events put on by a divergent group of organizers makes you really appreciate what’s good about some shows and, of course, what isn’t. Because of this, I have some definite opinions on what makes a good machinery show. One of them is being able to get into the field with a machine and actually see it work.
Of course, there are some great indoor shows with unmatched appeal, and they are able to offer a great many advantages to show goers, not the least of which is a guarantee you won’t have to worry about the weather. But nothing really beats getting some mud on your boots watching equipment at work.
Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show, held every September in Woodstock, Ontario, is one of those shows I like to go to, because it offers field demonstrations. This past week the company that owns Grainews, Glacier Farm Media—and also owns the Woodstock show—has announced it will be starting a brand new annual event at Saskatoon that will also focus on in-field demonstrations.
Before you get too skeptical and think I’m just sucking up to my boss by talking about the company’s new venture, I have to tell you that as a machinery guy I’m really looking forward to this new show. Unless prairie producers were invited to a manufacturer or dealer field day, there really was no regional opportunity to see new equipment at work and get a good feel for what it can do.
The new show, dubbed Ag in Motion, will be held on July 21 to 23 this year on 320 acres of land near the University of Saskatchewan at Saskatoon. And the man heading it up is Rob O’Connor, who until two years ago was at the helm of Canada’s Farm Progress Show in Regina. Rob was a big part of keeping that event on track and making it an even better show in recent years.
“What’s really unique about this show (Ag in Motion) is it brings agriculture equipment and inputs to an agricultural setting,” Rob O’Connor said in an interview. “The property was actually farmed last year so you can get a really good sense of what that equipment or what that variety of crop can do because it’s there in the setting you’re most familiar with, versus being inside a building or on a concrete pad. It won’t be hard to understand how that product will look in your field or on your farm.”
It hasn’t yet been officially announced just exactly what equipment will be demonstrated this year, so keep your eye open for more on that. If it turns out you’ll be in the market for one of those machines, what better opportunity will you get to actually see them in action before you spend your money.
See you at the show,