2016 Halifax County Heritage & Antique Machinery Festival

Model A Ford's Return to Heritage Festival in 2016


The iconic Model A Ford will descend en masse on Halifax County, many from out of town, to participate again in the annual Halifax County Heritage & Antique Machinery Festival in May. Four Model A Ford Clubs, including two from the Tidewater Area of Virginia, one from Raleigh, and the local Virginia – Carolina Model A Ford Club will spend the weekend in Halifax County to attend the Festival and sight see around Halifax County. Organizers expect more than 35 Model A Fords to participate in the Festival, and tour local sites in the County during the weekend. This will be the fifth year of participation in the Festival for these clubs.

The Model A Ford is known affectionately as “Henry’ Lady”. The Model A Ford was Henry Ford’s, with the help of his son Edsel, answer to a re- designed automobile to replace the famed Model T. Not that Henry Ford really wanted to replace his beloved Model T, but he was convinced by his son that the time had come if the Ford Motor Company was going to survive the on-slaught from fierce competition. The Model T, nicknamed the “Tin Lizzie”, had run its course in the consumer’s eye, and was obsolete.

The Model A was introduced in late 1927 to great fanfare and was an immediate success. It was easier to drive and maintain, and women in particular welcomed the idea of being able to now drive an automobile with ease. The Model A came in colors too, a first for the Ford Motor Company, and was almost as affordable as the Model T. The Model A was produced for four years from 1928 through 1931 and is perhaps the most recognized antique car of all time. The Model A Ford is as much a part of the heritage of Halifax County as other things that will be featured at the Heritage Festival. Back in the day, the Model A Ford plied many of the primitive roads of the county, and later became the source for other utilitarian purposes such as homemade pickup trucks and platforms for buzz saws which were used on many farms.

The Fairfield Inn & Suites in South Boston will again serve as the host hotel, and many of the Model A Ford owners will spend two nights there over the weekend. The local Virginia – Carolina Model A Ford Club will again serve as the host Club and has planned a full weekend of activities for the Model A Ford owners from all the clubs. Hugh Smith, president of the local club said, “We are really pleased and excited that members of these four Model A Fords clubs are coming together again for the fifth year to support the Heritage Festival, a testament to the hospitality shown them by members of the Halifax County Heritage & Antique Machinery Festival committee, and our local Model A club members.” He continued, “This is one of the premier events of the year for our local club and we are pleased to showcase the Model A Ford, Halifax County, as well as, the Festival.”  He also expressed his gratitude to club members Butch and Pam Blanks and Larry and Pam Clark for their hard work in taking the lead in coordinating the Model A Ford weekend and participation in the Heritage Festival. Butch also serves on the Halifax County Heritage & Antique Machinery Festival committee.

Jim Bostic and his wife Sally, members of the Colonial Virginia Model A Ford Club, are again serving as tour directors and will lead members of their club and those of the Cape Henry Model A Ford Club from the Virginia Beach area to Halifax County on Friday, May 6th.   Jim commented, “We are delighted to again bring a large contingent of Model A’s from the Tidewater area to the Heritage Festival and Halifax County. This will be our fifth straight year, and we thoroughly enjoy coming each year to such a beautiful part of the Commonwealth and   experience the hospitality offered by the festival folks and members of the local Model A Ford club.”  About twenty Model A Fords from Tidewater will make the 180 mile, five-hour journey from Tidewater to South Boston on Friday of the Festival weekend. They will be joined in South Boston by the Raleigh area Tarwheel Model A Ford Club members, and members of the local Virginia – Carolina Model A Ford Club.

The Model A Ford owners welcome everyone to come out to the Festival to look at the Model A’s on display Saturday morning, talk to the owners and share “old car” stories with them. The 35 or more Model A Fords will depart the Fairfield Inn & Suites at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday to travel in a convoy to the Halifax County Events Center (Fairgrounds), and the public is invited to look for them along Route 360 (John Randolph Boulevard) as they make their way to the Center.

The 13th Annual Halifax County Heritage and Antique Machinery Festival will be held at the Halifax County Fairgrounds May 6th through 8th.   Festival times are Friday from 12 noon until 9 pm; Saturday from 9 is to 9 pm and Sunday from 1 pm until 5 pm.

Admission is $5.00 for adults and children 12 years old and older.  Children under 12 years old are admitted free of charge.

For more information about the 13th Annual Halifax County Heritage and Antique Machinery Festival, visit www.halifaxcountyheritagefestifal.org

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