FRESNO -- Rural Life Sunday celebrating "Farm Life" took place Sept. 9 at the Fresno United Methodist Church with Pastor Mary Owen officiating.
The outdoor worship service began at 10 a.m. in the Fresno Park shelter with 127 in attendance. The setting for the outdoor worship service included straw bales with the American Flag and fall decorations, as well as a candle lighting ceremony with a poem and silent prayer in ceremony for Sept. 11th's 11th anniversary.
Special music for the Sept. 11th ceremony was "God Bless the USA" by Charlotte Marsh. Other special music was "Farmer," the song was written by Janet Miller and sung by Kialeigh, Joselyn and Jaydeigh Miller. Another song, "There is Nothing Greater Than Grace," was sung by Marsh. During the program, a Farmer's Creed was read by Craig and Brian Powell as a tribute to John Powell. The message for the day was entitled, "Your God Given Talents," and was given by Dean Wyler Wuebker, agriculture education teacher at Versailles. Other hymns that were sung were, "This is my Father's World," "His Eye is on the Sparrow," and the closing hymn was, "Bringing in the Sheaves."
The outdoor service was followed by a covered dish dinner. Those in attendance stat at picnic tables outside, and enjoyed the music and singing of Larry Stahl of Bakersville on the violin and the guitar.
Later on, there was a children's pedal tractor pull that was sponsored by Brian Powell and the Ridgewood Young Farmers. There were five weight classes and approximately 25 children participated. The first class pulling was 30 to 45 pounds and the winner was Lorren Wentz. The second class was 46 to 60 pounds and the winner was Reed Shroyer. The third class was 61 to 75 pounds and the winner was Alana Shroyer. The fourth class was 76 to 90 pounds and the winner was Jeremy Tidwell and the fifth class was 91 to 105 pounds and the winner was Lincoln Trimmer. Trophies were awarded to first place winners and sponsored by Brian Darr Farms, Wyler Pulling Team, Kurt Wyler, John and Jackie Wilkins Farms, and Jim Shroyer (woodworking).
Throughout the afternoon, there was a petting zoo, watermelon eating contest won by Danny Moore, Paige and Wesley Newbury. There were cake walks, ring toss games, plenty of refreshments including popcorn, snow cones, and homemade ice cream and cake.
The grand finale was the tractor parade and hayride. There were 20 tractors, four-wheel drive vehicles, antique tractors and lawn mowers that lined the fence of the shelter house. Also included was a hay wagon which was filled with people for the hay ride.
A special honor was given by the trustees to Dean Wyler, John Powell and Dewey Todd. They were presented a sign for the Fresno Park and the above three were on the Park Board when the park was developed and established.
There were over 145 people in attendance for the event.