Monday, May 9, 2016

Heritage Acres receives $29,450 CFEP grant for dairy exhibit

(l-r) Cheque presentation with Oldman River Antique Equipment and Threshing Club Executive Director Mark Barber, Past President Rob Mitchell, MLA Pat Stier, and Directors Ken Lewis, Ken Harness and Michael Cousineau

Christian Davis - Livingstone-Macleod MLA Pat Stier presented a $29,450 cheque from the Government of Alberta to members of the Oldman River Antique Equipment and Threshing Club (ORAETC) board in a low-key ceremony on May 7 at the Heritage Acres Farm Museum, which is located in the MD of Pincher Creek just north of the Oldman River Dam.  ORAETC is the museum's administrative body.  The funds will go toward the ongoing restoration of the Zoeteman/Vogelaar Barn, which was moved from it's original home just northeast of the Town of Pincher Creek to Heritage Acres in early February, 2014.

Zoeteman/Vogelaar Barn (front), spring 2016

Barn move video, February 2014

The grant was awarded through the Alberta Culture and Tourism's Community Facility Enhancement (CFEP) Program, which "assists with fostering the unique characteristics of Alberta's many communities" and is earmarked for cement flooring for both of the barns that make up the whole of the Zoeteman/Vogelaar Barn "complex".  According to Past President and Barn Chairman Rob "He's History" Mitchell the ground floor of the project will be turned into a dairy display and storage facility.

Restoration of Zoeteman/Vogelaar Barn (rear view) well underway

"This particular grant (CFEP) has really helped Heritage Acres through the years," explained ORAETC Director Ken Lewis. "This blue building (the large multi-purpose Main Display building) was built with the same grant."  It was completed in 2008.

Main Display Building entrance (2015 file photo)
This year Heritage Acres celebrates 29 years of operation. Organizers are preparing for their upcoming Annual Show, to be held July 29 - 31.  The Fall Fair will be held November 17.  The Christmas Candlelight Church Service will be held December 2, followed the next day with Breakfast with Santa.

One section of the planned Dairy Exhibit

Heritage Acres has also retaken the reins to the popular Chuckwagon Cookout this June, which will return to the Heritage Acres grounds and feature horse-related events.  The proceeds from that event are expected to help with matching grants. Work-in-kind is expected to match approximately 80% of the current CFEP grant.

New this year, Mark Barber has been appointed as the new Executive Director for Heritage Acres.  Barber is a Town of Pincher Creek Councillor and works at Pincher Creek's Alberta Treasury Branch.  "Mark is strong on managing things and finance..." explained Ken Lewis, adding that Barber is being mentored on the museum side of things by Heritage Acres stalwart Rick Bell.

The Happy Farmer
After the cheque presentation was concluded, Stier took a tour of some of the Heritage Acres sights, including a peek at the unuisual "Happy Farmer" 3-wheel tractor that is in the final stages of restoration. It's quite an unusual piece. The Happy Farmer was a failed experiment, but nevertheless an interesting exhibit. According to "The only two times the owner of a Happy Farmer tractor was really happy was on the day he bought it and on the day he sold it." Hopefully we'll see it at an upcoming Parade of Power, one of Heritage Acres' more popular Annual Show events.

Andrews Log House Summer 2015
Andrews Log House Spring 2016
Also new this year at Heritage Acres is the Blacksmith Shop, which organizers hope to have ready for the Annual Show.  It's located adjacent to the Doukhobor Barn.  Renovation on the historic Andrews Log House near the Crystal Village is also well underway, with much credit given to ORAETC Director Ken Harness from his fellow board members.  Harness has also worked extensively on repairing the Zoeteman/Vogelaar.

Heritage Acres is an ongoing project that continues to involve countless hours of labour from many volunteers.

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